Post image for Garden Labels of Love

Recently I had a quick stop-over in Penrith en route south. It’s always a bit of a mad dash but I needed a leg stretch and to catch a few Pokemon, so I toddled off around the town centre. Whilst going down a side street, I stumbled across a community street garden. And it really was a sidewalk special.

The garden was outside the Salvation Army Hall. It wasn’t clear whether the volunteers were part of this organisation or independent. Either way the signs were creative and inviting. It made me think about this as a great opportunity for children to write for a purpose within their own gardens – to create signs to be read by visitors to help them enjoy the blooms.

The “bring and take” box is another really copiable idea. People are encouraged to donate surplus fruit, veg, seedlings and plants. That there is a volunteer there too also helps. For school gardens, this is a lovely way of raising the profile of the benefits of gardening. To have children present and part of such a scheme in a school could be interesting. It’s an informal way of developing presenting skills.

I liked the reference to the mini wormery as a “Worm Cafe”. Look at the menu for the worms. Again, this approach is highly adaptable to a school context. Somehow, the wormery sounds rather a cool place for worms to hang out to be fed.

The plants were all labelled with a little extra information… some just for thoughts. Others gave suggestions for using the produce. The whole point of edible gardens is that you eat what grows. So this can be a good follow up from cooking with harvested food – that is for children to write up on labels what recipes or things they did with what they grew.

Of course, the odd pun and joke found their way into the signage… It made me wonder what jokes the children would choose to add to a garden. One of my favourite is “What’s orange and sounds like a parrot?” – Answer: “A carrot”.

The repurposing of different items was evident throughout the community garden. This can collection is rather fetching and is definitely a garden art project waiting to happen in a school.

Naturally old bicycle wheels have many decorative uses…

All-in-all, I hope you enjoyed these labels of love and apply the thinking behind them to your own school gardens. Happy summer time!


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