Creating an edible sensory garden for children with herbs


It is finally that time of year where we can spend more time outdoors due to the cooler weather.  This means, that is it a perfect time for gardening. 
This year, I am working on creating a sensory garden for our family.  What is a sensory garden?  A sensory garden is a garden that activates the maximum senses.  Because I have 2 young kiddos that garden with me, I wanted to make sure that all the plants were safe to touch and eat.  This meant, I focused on HERBS!!!
I tried to gather a variety of herbs with different colors, textures, smells, and tastes.  Rosemary adds a light bluish green color, strong odor when picked and tall leafy stems to the sensory garden.  Chives add the bright lime green wispy, long, smooth leaves.  I originally did not use markers in the pots, but realized, I was the only one who knew which plant was which.  Adding words and markers to the garden increases real world literacy.  My almost 3 year old is now starting to identify the words that say the name of each herb.  I used the free paint sticks (but only painted the top 2/3).  There are many other ways that your could label your plants too!
The best part is letting the kids help with the watering, weeding, and harvesting.  I can walk into our garden and smell the plants that they have been "playing" with.  The added bonus of herbs is that the more the kids pick them, the more they grow.  I encourage the kids to pick one or two herbs anytime they walk by.  Not only do we use these herbs in our everyday cooking, but they also use the herbs when pretending to cook in their outdoor pretend kitchen!
Do you have a sensory garden? 
If so, what would be the #1 plant that you would recommend adding???

8 comments:

  1. My kids and I love pineapple sage and lemon basil

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    1. ooh, we don't have any sage - and I've been making some breads that use dried sage. I'll have to look for some at the farmers market.

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  2. It looks very inviting! I can't wait to garden again in the spring. We do a sensory garden in pots on our deck. Each year we add a few new things, I think we added a nice set of wind chimes last year. Have fun!

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  3. I love the watering in a bike helmet :)

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    Replies
    1. Thanks - we do lots of things with our helmet on!

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  4. I love the way you have labelled your herbs. Where did you get the sticks? We are just starting a vegetable garden with my 2 year old little one- so excited
    Thanks!

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    Replies
    1. They are painted paint sticks - just ask for them at your local big chain store that sells paint and they give them to you free. I only paint the top 2/3rd so no paint touches the dirt.

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