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NEXT.cc is an eco web that develops ethical imagination and environmental stewardship. NEXT.cc introduces what design is, what design does and why design is important through over 100 journeys.

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Growing food

Planting your own garden is a great way to learn about where food comes from and how plants grow. Ever wonder what was the first food planted? How did people discover that seeds grew into fruit producing plants that were edible? Following the steps below will guide you through the planting process and caring for your plant.

How does YOUR garden grow?

Activity 1 grow an herb garden

Herbs are plants that flavor our food, cure our ailments, and keep us smelling sweet! Herbs were always an important part of a garden. You can grow herbs indoors on a windowsill. Parsley, chives, thyme, rosemary, sage, marjoram, rosemary and basil are the easiest to grow. Find a container that is the recommended size for your plant choice. A great place to start is with herbs like basil or oregano. Most can be grown inside and are fairly low maintenance.

Fill the container with nutrient rich soil. Then use your finger to gently make impressions in the soil for the seeds. Place one seed in each hole and cover with soil. Water and place container in a sunny spot.

Follow the directions on your seed packet to provide your plant with the right amount of water and sunlight. Soon your plants will begin to emerge from the soil.

Spice up your life!

Activity 2 Record your garden’s growth

Each week measure your plants with a ruler. Visually record the plants' growth by creating a bar graph.

When your plants are ready to harvest, follow the links on the final page to find ways to use your locally grown foods in a meal. Sit down and share this meal with a friend, family member, or classmate.

Watch it grow!

Activity 3 Learn About Uses for Herbs

Pick your favorite herbs. Research their origins in the library or online. Who used this herb first? How is the herb thought to affect our health? Which herb is good for your stomach? Which herbs soothe our nerves? Which herbs have vitamin C? Did you know that parsley has more iron than any other green vegetable? Did you know that dandelions can help clean your liver?!!! Echinacea is thought to help sore throats. Ginger root can help stimulate the circulation system. Lavender relaxes us. Herbs not only help our food and drinks taste better, they also help our health in many ways. Make a chart of at least twenty different herbs and their uses.

Pick your favorite one and grow it!

Review

  1. Plants that flavor our food are called:

  2. You can grow herbs inside year-round on a window sill.

  3. Lavender helps to stimulate our circulation system.

  4. Parsley has more iron than any other green vegetable.

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