We’ve Got Pumpkins!

And you will never see more excitement in the garden than kids discovering their first recognizable pumpkins.  Except in the case of worms and frogs.  Those are WAY exciting.

Granted we missed Halloween, but these are sugar pumpkins and we intend to cook them into pumpkin pie.  YUM! :)  Next up, our first tomato.

Green and gorgeous, it was all we could do not to yank it off.  But with energy levels high, we had to pluck something.  We chose the kidney beans.

Together, Lower Elementary plucked and pulled and voilá! 

Kidney beans!  Nice and plump, just the way we like them.  You can tell when your kidney beans are ready, because the pod will turn light tan in color.

This means they are semi-dry inside and ready for full drying.  If they’re green, don’t pick them.

You’ll open your pod only to discover light pink and immature beans which is no fun. 

Our lesson this week was all about organic pest control.  Harvest is exciting but won’t happen if the bugs get to our veggies first.  Because we’re organic, we must get creative.  Beyond squishing and dispatching, the kids learned that coffee and dish soap do wonders in spray form, as does garlic (in any form). 

Flowers can also help.  Number one pest repellent is the French marigold.  If you can only have one flower in or around the garden, this is it.  Geraniums and wormwood are also good choices but don’t stop there!  The kids learned rosemary, peppermint and spearmint are also winners.  Just ask them!  For more information, be sure to check out my “Scentsible” Pest Control.

Lower Elementary: Organic Pest Control_LE  and Upper Elementary: Organic Pest Control_UE  with Middle School more of the same, receiving the above “Scentsible” Pest Control handout.