Kids At Home: Special Indoor Projects!
Kids at home? Rainy, wet, windy, slushy outside? Tired of school work? It’s time to try something different! There are all sorts of easy, inexpensive experiments that kids can try inside depending on their interests, goals, and the difficulty of the projects.
For example, even small children can watch seeds germinate. Take a few beans or lentils out of the kitchen cabinet. Pour boiling water over a few, hot water over others, and cold water over a third group. What happened? Which ones did the best? Which ones germinated the fastest? Now carefully transplant started seedlings into three batches. Put one group in a sunny window, a second in a shady spot, and a third in the dark (or inside a paper bag). What happened and when? These could be done for fun or could be written up for a science project.
Another project is to take the top of a radish, carrot, turnip, beet, or the bottom off of a celery plant and set it in a low saucer of water. Did it start to grow? If it starts, change the water so it doesn’t get rancid or smelly! Another trick is to use a few granules of charcoal in the water so that bacteria and molds don’t start as easily. You will probably have to change unused water every 2 or 3 days. You could also take an avocado seed, rinse it off, carefully stick a pin in each side and then put it in water so that the lower half is submerged and the top is out. This also works with a section of yam or potato. Just be sure that you get a segment that has an indent where new leaves and roots will come out. Questions to ponder: How important is the temperature at which it starts? Some people put it in a warm sunny window or on top of the refrigerator or dryer to get it started faster. This is an easy way to start indoor plants!
You could also use the same method to start cuttings of Wandering Jew, Spider Plants, Mint, Pothos or Trailing Philodendrons. You can experiment with others, but you may want to use a rooting stimulant, like RootOne, and then carefully make a hole in sterile soil which has been pre-watered and warmed up. Then carefully put your cuttings down in the hole so you don’t bruise the sides of the cuttings! Don’t let cuttings dry out. When making cuttings, use a sharp knife or pruning shears. Cut at an angle ¼-½ inch below a joint for best results as new roots will come out of the joints. You can also put a stake in your pot, put a plastic bag over the top, and then put a tie around the base of the pot to keep more humidity in. Put a saucer of water underneath. Change the water every day or two.
Having fun? Many people get satisfaction out of starting their own plants and watching them grow. They become almost like a pet! Getting kids involved with gardening is also a great way for them to learn and maybe discover a new hobby!
Reminder: Don’t forget to get your fruit, shade trees, and early vegetables in!
11230 Nelson Rd NE, Moses Lake, WA
Garden Center • Flowers • Plants • Seeds