Watching Your Children’s Garden Grow Written by Rondi Hillstrom Davis
Start some gardening traditions with your kids. Give them their own garden patch and a spot to dig. Children love getting their hands dirty and watching things grow.
Be sure to buy good quality, child sized gardening tools. Plastic toy versions just won’t hold up to task. You will also need children’s gloves and a watering can.
Mark off garden area and turn soil. Kids can help break up any lumps with their hands. Work in some organic compost.
Choose seeds that will grow quickly. Small children get impatient if their plants take too long to sprout. Radishes, Snapdragons, Cosmos, and Sunflowers will all germinate quickly. Carrots and strawberries are also easy to grow-- and yummy to eat.
Large seeds like beans and Morning Glories are easy for small fingers to push into ground. You can start your seeds indoors in an eggshell carton. When seedlings are an inch high, tear off egg carton, and leaving soil intact, transplant seedlings outside.
Or, try placing beans on a wet paper towel inside a zip top bag. Tape bag to a sunny window and wait for seeds to germinate. I can remember, as a child, checking my beans every morning before school. The first shoots appeared to my delight and we carefully transplanted beans outdoors.
Make garden markers by painting small rocks. This will help kids keep track of their selections.
Make it fun! Grow a sunflower house by planting sunflowers in a circle with a space in middle big enough for your kids to hide. Be sure to leave room for a door.
The Wild Spikenard Written by J.A Carpunky
The Wild Spikenard also goes by names of False Solomon's Seal, and Solomon's Zig-zag. Its scientific name is Smilacina racemosa. This plant has white or greenish colored, small, slightly fragrant, densely packed flowers. It grows one to three feet tall, and has a simple, slightly angled stem which tends to be leafy and sometimes has a little hair on upper parts. The leaves of this lily are lance-shaped and grow from three to six inches long. They have a fine hairy growth on under side.
This wild flower also sports batches of aromatic, round berries which tend to be pale red speckled in color. It likes to grow in moist woods, thickets, or hillsides and flowers bloom from May to July. This one likes southern regions of United States, from Georgia over to Arizona.
The False Solomon's Seal tends to grow close to true Solomon's Seal, so novice gardeners can confuse two. But feathery plume of greenish-white blossoms that crowns false Solomon's Seal's somewhat zig-zagged stem is very different from small, greenish, bell-shaped flowers, usually nodding in pairs along stem, under leaves, from axils of true Solomon's Seal. Later in summer, when hungry birds wander through woods with increased families, Wild Spikenard offers them branching clusters of pale red speckled berries, whereas true Solomon's Seal plant gives them blue-black fruit to feast on.