Stones from the driveway, sand from the sandbox, dirt from the garden... a dandelion or two... or whatever interests you... a backyard in a jar.
Summer is on it's way, the season of visiting friends and spending time out doors, of watching each other's gardens grow. Every person or family has their own unique garden, and with this simple project you can share a little of yours with all your friends. Whether you have your own patch of green, a plot in a community garden or a few pots on a windowsill, inviting friends over to make backyard terrariums can be a great way to spend an afternoon, and to teach a group of little gardeners about the plant varieties that make up your garden landscape.
All you need are a few old glass jars from the recycling bin and you're good to go! You can use small garden tools like these to help with the digging, or spoons from the kitchen will work great too. The rocks should go in first followed by the sand and then the soil. This helps with the drainage so the roots don't get waterlogged. We used a turkey baster to help make the holes and the tongs are wonderful for placing the plants in them if the jar opening is too small to easily accommodate little hands.
Once everyone has made their backyard terrariums, you can close them up and label them with the name of the friend whose garden they were collected from, and then make plans to visit the next garden another day. After a while you might have a whole shelf full of little gardens from all of your friends, each one as unique and beautiful as they are!