Recycling Our Food

Earth Day is a great day to think about recycling! Not only recycling plastics and glass but, what about the parts of fruits and vegetables that we throw away? In nature, animals seek out discarded objects all the time. Some use these for houses or protection others find tools that are helpful to open or retrieve food.

Right now, we are staying safe at home and may not get to the grocery store as often as before. But with a little water, a little soil, and a bright sunny spot, you can start your vegetable garden inside with leftover plant pieces.

This lesson was inspired by Michelle Lord’s “Nature Recycles: How About You?” illustrated by Cathy Morrison. Before you get started on your vegetable garden, learn more about plants in these titles: Saving Kate’s Flowers, Daisylocks, and The Tree That Bear Climbed. 

planting jars
**Our jars are recycled too! These are yogurt jars, but they make perfect seedling jars after a quick washing.

Once you are ready to plant the veggie tops and bottoms, download our handy observation sheet to record the changes in your fruits and veggies. 

We followed some advice from this article when choosing our fruits and vegetables but doing some research on your own is certainly fun too! http://www.eatingwell.com/article/290729/how-to-grow-fruits-vegetables-from-food-scraps/

After just two days our green onion was sprouting, and now four days later the carrot looks to be sprouting tiny green hairs out of the top. Tag us in your vegetable growing and you could win advance copies of Arbordale’s fall titles.

Book Launch! The Forest in the Trees

We’re celebrating the release of The Forest in the Trees by Connie McLennan. This book takes readers high into the canopy of the world’s tallest trees, a forest where very few human eyes have spied the lush greenery and animal inhabitants that call the coast redwoods home.

Connie was inspired by botanist’s research. The scientists were able to climb the trees and explore the landscape to identify many different plants that thrive high amongst the clouds. Learning more about the discoveries is easy. In The Forest in the Trees, readers find a new plant or animal with the turn of a page!

Test your own skills at identifying trees and plants with our observation and identification guide:

About the Forest

A forest is an ecosystem. This ecosystem requires just the right soil for trees to secure their roots and grow tall trunks for the leaves that soak up the sunlight.

The plants and animals in this ecosystem need the trees, just as the trees need them to thrive. One ecosystem is found on the ground where we can walk around and marvel at the amazing size of the trees. The other is high in the sky, and only a select few botanists have laid eyes on this ecosystem.

So, what do botanists look for in this ecosystem?  Take this observation guide on your next walk through the forest and see if you can identify the trees and plants you find.

We’re giving away three copies of our new fall releases! Enter for a chance to win a copy of The Forest in the Trees and Animal SkinsWinners will be contacted on September 30th!

Get out the Craft Kit it’s Make a Gift Day

Are you buzzing around trying to find the perfect gifts for family and friends? Well, today we are getting crafty with some things collected from the backyard, and even learning a bit about plants too! Surely friends of Arbordale will love leafy bookmarks and floral candle holders. These crafts are simple to do as a family or for a classroom pair the craft with a lesson on soil (world soil day in on December 5th), trees, or flowers.

Here’s how we made our gifts today:

What we collected!

Outside we found some red and yellow leaves, pine needles, holly, and some palm fronds.

From the craft store we bought some ribbon, a glass candle holder, glue, laminating sheets, and also Mod Podge.

Making the bookmark is a very simple project for younger kids. We placed one laminating sheet sticky side up on the table, then placed leaves randomly. Then we placed the other laminating sheet on top securing the leaves in the middle and pressing them flat. Finally, we used a hole punch to put a small hole in the top and tied two strands of ribbon through the hole to complete the bookmark.

Next, we made a small candle holder with the holly and pine needles. We tied together the holly and the pine with a small bow and glued that on the front of the glass. You can also glue the leaves individually and use the Mod Podge to seal the leaves on the glass and match your bookmark.

Have fun crafting today and if you tried either of these crafts, show us by tagging us on social media!

Here are some books that pair well with these crafts:

After collecting leaves and flowers, talk about the different parts of the plant and what they need to survive. Each “For Creative Minds”section has wonderful lessons on plant needs. Daisylocks is a fun read to learn why some climates and soils are not just right for a flower. And, learn more about the many different varieties of trees, why some lose their leaves, and why others keep theirs all year long.

Check these titles out on arbordalepublishing.com!