Growing Craft Supplies: How To Create An Arts And Crafts Garden For Kids

Wooden Basket Of Craft Supplies
painted gourds
(Image credit: HarveyHymer)

Veteran gardeners will tell you that the best way to get kids interested in gardening is to give them their own plot of land and let them grow something interesting. Baby watermelons and rainbow carrots are always popular choices, but why not let them grow garden plants for art projects? Growing craft supplies combines kids' love of crafty projects with a growing interest in gardening. Next winter, when you're planning your vegetable garden, plan and order supplies and learn how to create an arts and crafts garden.

Tips on Creating a Craft Garden Theme

What is a craft garden? It looks like any other garden plot, but the plants grown inside it are used as supplies for craft projects instead of as food or flowers. The craft garden can contain a hodge-podge of different craft supplies growing side by side, or you can grow an entire collection of plants to be used in one craft. Creating a craft garden theme is entirely up to you and your children, as each one is personalized and different from the rest.

Craft Garden Ideas for Kids

Sit down with your kids during the planning stages and find out what crafts they like to do. Plan similar crafts for later in the year and find seeds to grow their supplies. You don't have to do exact copies of craft store projects; simply look for themes in the kinds of crafts they enjoy. Craft garden ideas come from everywhere. Look at each plant's characteristics and see how it can be used in crafty projects.

Color Dye Garden

If your kids like painting t-shirts and doing other fiber arts, grow a dye garden with them. Choose a number of plants that produce natural dyes and experiment with them after harvest to see what colors you can come up with. Some of the simplest dye plants to grow are:

Learn about dying shirts and yarns and discover the sometimes surprising colors you'll create.

Bead Garden

Grow a patch of Job's tears for kids who enjoy beading. This grain plant grows much like wheat but produces chunky seeds with a natural hole in the center, perfect for stringing on cord. The beads have a naturally shiny coating and an attractive streaked brown and grey color.

Gourd Growing

Grow a mixed gourd patch and allow your children to decide what to do with each gourd. Dried gourds are tough as wood and can be used for birdhouses, storage containers, canteens and even ladles. A packet of mixed seeds makes for a fun mystery variety. Allow the gourds to dry completely before using them, which can take several months, then leave them plain or allow the children to paint them or decorate them with permanent markers. These, of course, are just a few ideas that you can try. Use your imagination and discover additional craft garden themes.