Building a “Fairy Tail” Garden

Children and adults sitting on a custom garden bench with the Gabby's Dollhouse logo and characters

Last Thursday, KidsGardening joined folks from the Caring Center in Philadelphia, PA to celebrate the installation of a “Kitty Fairy-Tail Garden” in partnership with DreamWorks Animation and their show Gabby’s Dollhouse. The gathering, which coincided with Earth Day, included planting activities, seed ball making, and most importantly the unveiling of the new garden space!

Kids in colorful hats, coats, face coverings, and garden gloves are planting in a raised bed.The Caring Center, an early childhood education childcare center, after-school, and summer program was excited to augment their outdoor play area by expanding their garden space. Previously, the Center had three raised beds that were being used by children to grow food that would make its way into snacks, meals, and educational activities like cooking classes and taste tests. The beds were over a decade old and on the smaller side. In an effort to provide more space for children who attend programming at the Center to learn and grow, educators proposed refurbishing some of the existing beds and expanding the garden footprint. 

With the help of Terren Landscapes, eight new raised beds were installed along the perimeter of the Caring Center’s outdoor playspace, one old raised bed was rebuilt, and three apple trees were planted. Additionally, the Center teamed up with Tiny WPA to install a special Gabby’s Dollhouse planting bench (pictured above) that can be used to store tools, grow flowers, and provide a place for children to sit and relax with friends.

KidsGardening Executive Direction Em Shipman, who attended the Earth Day event, says "it was an honor to be able to support the Caring Center to see their teaching garden dreams become reality. Our partnership with DreamWorks Animation is allowing the phenomenal educators at this preschool and early care center to engage 160 kids in garden-based education in just this first year. Kids are learning where their food comes from, connecting with plants and nature and it's cycles, and getting therapeutic time outdoors."

Kids Garden Month is here!

A collage of photos of children gardening, with the words Kids GARDEN month

April is here, and our annual celebration of kids in the garden is in full swing! This year, our Kids Garden Month contest asks kids to tell us what they LOVE about their garden. Already, we’ve gotten such amazing entries!

Caroline W’s poem about trying new things:

I have a new garden

I’ve planted arugula and herbs

We’ve tasted and tried a few tasty treats.

I like it all except the beets.

Maya is using the garden to inspire AND create. She made this piece of artwork using real grass!

A child's drawing of a person, flowers, butterflies, soil, and sun with the words I (heart) sunshine

We are awarding weekly prizes, grand prizes for an individual and a group, as well as SIX $500 awards for school gardens. We still have lots of prizes to give away! We can’t wait to hear from the kids you garden with about what they LOVE about their garden or gardening.

Enter the Kids Garden Month contest!

We’re announcing weekly winners on our Instagram page (meet Lilly and Logan, our first winners), as well as sharing your entries all month long.

Thank you to our sponsors, American Meadows and Breck’s for their support in making this contest possible!


Coast-to-Coast Virtual school gardens tour, Tuesday April 27, 10am PTAttention school gardens!

Young people from across the country will be gathering on April 27 for the first-ever virtual school garden tour! Students from Hawai’i to D.C. will share with your students how STEM education, nutrition and environmental literacy, hope and healing are brought to life through outdoor learning. Register at GrowingSchoolGardens.org.

School gardens also have an additional opportunty to win weekly drawings for $100 Gardener’s Supply gift cards! Follow @sgsonetwork on Twitter or Instagram for details. Use #growingschoolgardens to enter.