Gardening-planting-growing Feed

🌼Botany 📚Books Based Study

Spring is in full bloom, and we cannot stop admiring all the beauty unfolding in front of our eyes. And discoveries lead to questions: "Where do flowers come from? How do flowers know when to bloom? How do they get their food?  What is pollination?" And so forth. 

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As always, we find our answers in books. Eyewitness Plant book (top-right/buy here) features stunning real-life photographs of flowers, fruits, seeds, leaves, offering young readers a unique eyewitness view of the fascinating world of plants, including plant's anatomy and growth. 

DSC_0020This amazing Plant book even comes with a Clip Art CD and a large comprehensive 22" x 30" wall chart.

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We are also loving Flowers (My First Discoveries) book (bottom-right/buy here), where beautiful transparent overlay pages reveal how buds blossom and flower into fruit, how sunflowers turn to face the sun, and how bees and butterflies settle on spring flowers. 

DSC_0110  Dandelion: from a bud ~ to a flower ~ to a seed.

DSC_0159* IG LfStIf you were to wish on a dandelion, what would it be?

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Flowers book offers bright illustrations and prompts you to get outside and learn hands-on. So, Adrian gathered Dandelions during our nature walks and arranged them in a lifecycle of the plant.

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There must be [a] provision for the child to have contact with nature, to understand and appreciate the order, the harmony and the beauty in it… so that the child may better understand and participate in the marvelous things which civilization creates.  ~ The Secret of Childhood, Dr. Maria Montessori.

DSC_0110In Flowers book, detailed and instructive illustrations, together with clear and simple texts, hold children’s attention, whilst the overlays on the transparent pages reveal hidden surprises and facilitate understanding. Here, the book's instructions prompted to press a flower between the sheets, and stick it onto book's page once dried. Julia wanted to draw the flower first.

DSC_0200Adrian is learning parts of the flower by referencing a gorgeous book Nature Anatomy (buy all three books in a Collection: Farm Anatomy, Nature Anatomy, and Food Anatomy here). We simply fell in love with Julia Rothman's writing and illustration style. These three books are like mini-encyclopedias, which your little one (and big ones) would love!

DSC_0202The top right book with a crocus is Flowers book, and the Eyewitness Plant book offers an in-depth study of the bulb and other plant parts. 

After having explored the parts of the flower with Nature Anatomy book, we went out to our yard and dug some Dafdaffodils which had finished blooming already. We then talked about the parts of the plant: such as roots, stem, leaves and a flower. We also inspected the bulb and its parts. Adrian was amazed to find out a large-cupped bulb, similar to a garlic bulb, consisting of many smaller cloves, capable of producing many stems per bulb, and, depending on the bulb's energy reserves, each stem has the potential to grow a flower! And, we found out that we can divide daffodil's bulb ~ the best time being when the foliage has begun to die back (such feeds the bulb and will ensure healthy bulbs with plenty of stored sugar for the next season’s growth). Read more here. And so we did. We separated ones that pulled off easy and planted them right away.


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What flower or plant books are you reading? See here our Spring Activities roundup in a post 🌸Spring 🌱Inspired Themed Unit Study.

Read here a post "Learning about ❄️🌸🌳🍂Seasons" where we were exploring nature's cycle.

For more on leaves identification, read a post "Learning About 🍃 Leaves (Botany Lesson)" here.

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Our last tomato harvest this year

I cannot believe we are still harvesting our tomatoes! They look pretty nice next to our Christmas Tree:) However, I trust this is our last harvest this year. Can you believe it is almost New Year?  


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DSC_0496*Yummy and juicy!DSC_0496*Children grew these tomatoes from seeds, and now the vines are taller than Adrian!

(Read how they grew them here.)

You can see here how much the tomatoes had grown in November. 

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Tomatoes in November

It is a middle of November, and we had to move our tomatoes inside since we had freezing temperatures at night. The tomatoes are growing, and it looks like we will have a nice harvest in time for Christmas!

DSC_0210This one is red! Ready to be picked! "Yummy!"

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DSC_0210Oh, no! We have to wait till the tomato ripens a little more!
DSC_0210"Wow!" Adrian exclaims. "Mommy, see how much they have grown!"
DSC_0210Adrian checks on his tomatoes almost daily! What a wonderful way to teach patience.

Adrian is amazed that he has grown these tomatoes from little seeds he had planted in the Spring. Read how he did it here.

You can also see our tomato harvest in time for Christmas here

 

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Planting our Spruce Tree

Today, it is March 9th, and it is gorgeous sunny outside, in mid 80°F. It appears that spring frost is no longer a danger, and it is time to plant our Spruce Tree, which children received last Christmas at Santa's Workshop at the Nature's Nursery. The tree was given as a gift, and in exchange, children were asked to commit to planting the Spruce Tree in their yards next spring as a lesson in sustainability and the importance of giving back to the Earth. Here are the instructions: 

 After the last spring frost, plant your tree in an area with full sun exposure. Dig a planting hole measuring twice the width of the nursery container and 2 inches deeper. Remove the tree from the container and gently loosen the soil around the roots. Position the tree in the center of the hole. Carefully fill the hole with planting mix and compost, being sure that the top of the tree’s soil ball is just slightly higher that the soil line. Water your tree regularly throughout the first year.

 By planting this tree,

you are helping give back to nature and restore the environment!

Well, we are ready to give back!


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“It is the child who makes the man, and no man exists who was not made by the child he once was” (Maria Montessori).

If we can instill in children the love for nature, the sense of oneness with all living, and the respect for the scarcity of natural resources, we are building a better world. And we hope that our children will carry these premises with them throughout their life, and in turn relay them to their children ...  “The things he sees are not just remembered; they form a part of his soul” (Maria Montessori). And that is exactly what we are hoping for! By having our children be with nature, we had laid a foundation for a better world already since 

"The child is both a hope and a promise for mankind” (Maria Montessori).


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HAPPY PLANTING!


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Growing Basil from Seeds

We bought these basil seeds in Switzerland, during our Europe trip in 2011, and they germinated despite the five years of storage! Within one week after planting, we could already see the little seedlings.

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DSC_0347about 2 weeks after planing the seeds

The sprouts are still very vulnerable to any temperature change, so they have to stay indoors inside the "green-house" (under a plastic cover).

DSC_0399Adrian is so gentle with the little basil sprouts. He is "feeling" them so lightly ... 

DSC_0926time to replant
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DSC_0172*B basil-001Finally, we are able to enjoy the crop - not a lot of seedlings survived, but few did!

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