I took children from Mygrove schools on an exciting tour around the gardens at the Ideal Home Show to teach them how fun gardens and plants can be. And we had a great day!
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Mygrove is the Prince of Wales’ online competition for school gardening. Students write blogs about their school garden and all the things they’ve learnt – the best one will win a trip to Highgrove Gardens! Find out more here.
Children between the ages of 4 and 12 joined me for a tour of the show gardens from the Young Gardeners of the Year competition. We looked at each garden in turn, talking about our favourite plants and features.
Then we found some hidden pictures of wildlife that lives in British gardens and discovered some incredible facts about them – did you know butterflies taste with their feet?!
Then we headed up to the VIP area at the Earl’s Court Exhibition Centre to get our hands dirty in a gardening workshop. First the kids had a go at sowing different types of seeds – from peas and beans to melons and sunflowers.
Next we made some insect hotels so the kids could attract wildlife into their own gardens. They pushed straw into little tubes to create a nice, cosy house for insects to live in.
Finally, we had a look at plants with weird and wonderful smells and textures. The kids were as fascinated as I am by leaves that feel like lamb’s ears and plants that smell of lemon sherbet.
There was just time to give out some special ‘grow your own pumpkin’ kits from Suttons Seeds. They should be ready to carve by Halloween!
By the end of the workshop, the room was a tip and there was straw and compost all over the floor. Oops!
Then it was time for some extra-special VIP treatment – front row seats at the Super Theatre!
I got up on stage to take part in my unusual container planting challenge, but it was lucky I had the kids watching to warn me when I got compost on the floor – I made quite a mess!
Thanks to everyone for coming and making it such a great day. It was lovely to see so many children getting enthusiastic about gardening and wildlife.
David Domoney is a Chartered Horticulturalist, Broadcaster, and Author. David has worked with a number of the UK’s leading garden retailers as a plant buyer and strategic consultant. With more than 30 years experience, in horticulture, David is as passionate about plants now as he was when he bought his first plant at a village fete.
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