Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Earth Day Gardening-Grow Your Own Sunflower and Teepee Playhouses


I love earth day!  I love celebrating our Earth and the reminder that it gives us to be Earth friendly.  It sparks great conversations with my children, as well!  Though we do this stuff year round, it never hurts to have things brought to our attention again! ;)


I love gardening and have quite a few passionate ideas about it.  I feed my kids as many foods as I can, from our own garden.  Here are a few ideas I have done in the past to help my children get excited about being outdoors and growing a garden. 

The top picture was a patch that my children and I planted sunflowers in.  You can see the rectangular shape that the sunflowers were planted in.  We moved before this finished.  However, the idea was that that was going to be a sunflower playhouse  for them to play in, where the walls are made out of sunflowers!  I also had vining flowers planted between the sunflowers, to grow up the sunflower stalks and fill in the “walls”.


The picture above is from Family Fun, so that you could see a finished version of this!  There are so many out there to look at and make you NEED to grow this playhouse! ;)

You can even get a kit to do this with.  It includes one of those rollout mats with the seeds already in them!

earth day pea bean teepee

Another playhouse idea (sorry for the bad picture, it was from YEARS ago).  We took branches from our trees and dug them into the ground in a large circle.  Then we tied them together at the top to form a teepee.  At the bottom we planted green beans and peas to grow up the teepee branches and fill out the “walls” of our teepee.  Again, we moved before this one filled in. 


I love those teepee’s all filled in!  The bonus is that your kids wont have to come in for a snack, simply pull off beans from the walls! ;)  I got it that image from Whipup.


Above is another living playhouse found at Whipup.  I love the dome shape of this.  I would love to set up a pretty little picnic or fancy tea party in there for my kids!


Take a look at this amazing living structure found through flickr. 

I love these two playhouse ideas so much that we will be doing them again, one day when I have a place for them!  How could children resist playing outside in those!?

earth day kids garden

In this picture is my daughter’s zuchini plant that she took care of herself.  It is planted in the pot she painted up, as well.  My kids love having their own plants to take care of.  In front of the zuchini pot is a carnivorous plant.  They are another great way to get your kids interested in growing things and being outdoors.  My kids love these!!


I also want to point out that you don’t have to have a lot of land to get a high yield of plants.  This is a tiny garden that I carved out of an unused space.  I made up my own trellis and bricked in that area.  I grew zuchini, tomatoes, carrots and lettuce out of that tiny space!  Seriously, I live in Phoenix and so it is HOT here.  If I can grow that much out of that tiny space, in Phoenix, everyone can do it!  These type of spaces are perfect to give kids control over.  


A last word about gardening with children.  We have a compost (bought cheap from WalMart).  My kids love taking the scraps from the kitchen and garden and adding it to the compost.  Those are the tops to our carrots that are in the compost.  Here in Phoenix we actually have to water our compost regularly to make it compost quicker!  I just think composting is so important to do with our kids, for so many reasons!


Come back tomorrow for another Wednesday’s Creative Inspiration Link Up Party!  Link up anything creative that you have been up to lately!

And on Earth Day I will have a post showing this years garden.  I just moved so it was all started from scratch (I even made the garden boxes myself!).  So come back on Thursday as well! ;)


CitricSugar said...

What a neat idea! Rebecca, at first I thought I read the title wrong, but no. It's exactly what it should be. You gals come up with the coolest stuff!

PS - Katrina: Have you read "Born on a Blue Day" by Daniel Tammet? If you haven't, check it out. He's a rare individual on the Aspberger/Autism scale in that he can articulate quite clearly how he processes information. I found it fascinating and thought it might be of interest to you...

Beth said...

So many great ideas! I want to do a sunflower house this year too. Unfortunately, bunnies around our house like sunflowers as much as I do.
Have you ever read "Weslandia" by Paul Fleischman? That's what I kept thinking of as I looked at all the cool "houses"!!!

Over Yonder said...

Thank you for those ideas!! my two kids would LOVE to do that. We have some sunflowers growing inside and I now know what we will do with them! FUN!

inadvertent farmer said...

Those are simply awesome...I hope you share them with the rest of us in the Children's Garden contest. They would be great inspiration! Kim

inadvertent farmer said...

Thanks for linking up...you are sharing some wonderful ideas with everyone! Kim

brooke said...

This bad weather has me garden dreaming. I LOVE this idea. I am totally doing this for the shorties this summer

john milton said...

Good information for buying garden sheds and playhouses online.Thanks for sharing this blog.Garden Playhouses Online

Anitra Kitfield said...

i love the idea of planting vining plants inbetween to fill in the gaps!!! Your blog is almost impossible to read, every page opens a popup in the same window as your blog, and if you try to click out of it it sends you to yet another page trying to sell something, and the only way i was able to read you post was to press back and then stop the page from loading completely...i dont know how you fix this hack but i felt you needed to be informed about it.

moorejoy said...

Summer project

moorejoy said...

Summer project