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From Child's Toy to Garden Lesson

February 22, 2019

By: Barb Holtz

I am a first-time grandma, busy watching my twin babies grow. I am also a nerdy, naturalist grandma set on dirtying my grandklds through nature fun as soon as the ground thaws. How thrilled was I when they received a toy about gardening! Needless to say, we play endlessly with this toy.

We sing the songs and harvest the vegetables, count how many times we water and chew on the trowel. (I won't let this happen outside although a little dirt never hurt anyone.) One song of particular interest offered somewhat garbled lyrics. With a first line "The life cycle of a plant is a wonderful thing" I became obsessed with deciphering the second line. Did it really say "They sprout plants and garbage?" Yes, we emailed the company with an inquiry. And guess what, they responded!

The life cycle of a plant is a wonderful thing.

Seed, sprout, plant and harvest.

Now I could sleep at night.

Okay, no judging. At the onset of this writing, I self-proclaimed my nerdiness. How we teach and raise the next generation of plant lovers matters. Dirt is not icky and bees are not bad. Our food does not come from a grocery store and flowers aren't just for picking. Seed are a beginning. Sprouts support roots that secure and water the growing plant. Flowering plants produce a myriad fruits and foods for us and fellow creatures. Fruits hold seed.

Now is a great time to sow native plant seeds. Another good lesson for the next generation: Nature is busy throughout each season continuing the cycle. So plant a seed in the dirt and in a child. The life cycle of a plant is a wonderful thing!

How fun is this?

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