Valentine’s Day Botany

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The cacao tree and rose bush are the botanical royalty of Valentine’s Day. What better way to show your love than through a gift of chocolate and flowers?

With plant products in the limelight, Valentine’s provides you with the perfect opportunity to show students the important role our green friends play in our celebrations and traditions. Here are a few fun facts to share with your students this Valentine’s Day:

The Cacao or Chocolate Tree

Fall & Winter Nature Art Inspired by Andy Goldsworthy

Japanese maples leaves are strategically placed to create beautiful art by Goldsworthy.Want to put a new spin on your family’s backyard winter fun? Sparking far more creativity than the typical snowman, introduce your family to the inspiring work of British sculpture and photography artist, Andy Goldsworthy.

Indoor Gardening

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Download sample lesson plans from GrowLab®: Activities for Growing Minds

Make Room for Raddy (pdf)

Plantenstein (pdf)

Does the weather have you stuck inside your classroom? Invite the outdoors in… plant an indoor garden!

Most classrooms garden during the fall and spring, but by incorporating plant activities indoors you can reap the benefits of garden programs year round. Using grow lights or sunny windowsills, your class can experiment with growing a wide range of plants, from houseplants and blooming bulbs to edible crops like radishes and lettuce.

Blooming Gifts

Blooming plants make wonderful gifts for special occasions. They add to the festive atmosphere of any event and when the blooms begin to fade, they can be enjoyed for their foliage or composted.

Let There Be Peace on Earth

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2013 Muhammad Ali Center Peace Garden Grant

NGA is proud to announce the 3rd year of the Muhammad Ali Peace Center Peace Garden Grant program sponsored by Yum! Brands Foundation. In an effort to help all schools sow the seeds of respect, the Muhammad Ali Center Peace Garden is designed to help schools teach lessons of peace and hunger awareness through garden activities. As a global initiative, the United States and all international locations are eligible for participation. Grants applications are due on January 2, 2013. Apply online.

Read about one of our 2012 grant recipients: Twelve Stones Community Garden.

Plant the seeds for world peace in your garden. The garden offers a laboratory for students to observe how all living things are interconnected and must stay in balance to thrive. Here are a few peace related themes you can introduce through garden programs:

Amaryllis for the Holidays

Potted amaryllis bulbs make wonderful holiday gifts for family and friends. Planting them and then watching them grow also makes for a fun activity to do with your children. Their beautiful blooms add to holiday décor and last longer than cut flowers. They are fairly inexpensive (although you may find some of the more unique varieties are offered at a premium price) and the only supplies you need are bulbs, soil and pots.

The Youth Garden Grant

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The Home Depot is the world's largest home improvement specialty retailer, with 2,241 retail stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, 10 Canadian provinces, Mexico and China. Visit The Home Depot Garden Club site for more information.

Plants. Soil. Shovels.

Inspiration. Motivation. Recognition.

As sponsor of the Youth Garden Grant Program, The Home Depot provides schools and nonprofit organizations with the tangible and intangible supplies needed to grow and sustain vibrant youth gardening programs.

Please Pass the Pumpkin Seeds

It’s pumpkin time again! Although it is the eye catching, orange fruit of the pumpkin plant that receives the honor of being the hallowed symbol of season, the seeds deserve some glory too. Think twice before you toss those pumpkin guts this year. Pumpkin seeds are tasty little packages full of vitamins and minerals offering numerous health benefits.

Teens Reaching Youth in Utah

Building forts, picking berries and floating stick boats can be pleasant childhood experiences that lead to fond memories and a lifelong appreciation of nature. However, children today are far less likely than past generations to spend time playing outside, and a growing body of research says children are paying a high price for it.

World Food Day: October 16, 2012

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Download this free classroom guide from Kidsgardening and Oxfam America:

World Food Day Classroom Guide for Educators

World Food Day is a great opportunity for students and teachers to understand more about global approaches to ending hunger. This year’s theme is “Agricultural cooperatives—key to feeding the world”. Observing the day as a school or individual classroom is one of the best ways to raise awareness about food instability and other food-related issues like malnutrition. Don’t be intimidated if you don’t know where to start!

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Kids Gardening and the National Gardening Association actively work with schools and communities across the country to provide educational resources and build gardens to promote health, wellness, and sustainability.


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Last updated on 04/01/2015
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