Each year we always need to earn a bit of seed money for the school garden. Why not plant a gift for Mother’s Day and have a mini plant sale the week before the special day?
Start by planning ahead. Check out local thrift shops for bone china tea cups without the saucers. What I have found is many thrift shops throw teacups that are missing their saucers into the trash. If you ask, they may even wish to donate the tea cups to your school garden. What a great way to recycle something that would have been otherwise thrown out.
You could also collect old tea pots. These are all very beautiful planted up with flowers. The trick to planting tea cups is using the right plants. I like to plant Violas for this project. They are small flowers with a small root system and fit perfectly into most tea cups. Have a tarp on the ground and plant the cups outside.
To start, place a very small amount of lightweight potting soil in the bottom of the tea cup. Remember that the cup is not very deep and you will need to allow room for the plants roots.
Place a plant inside the cup and carefully poke soil around the edges being sure to press as you go to fill in any air pockets.
I like to use a spoon to place the soil in the tea cup. A hand trowel is too large for this delicate planting. Brush off the cup and give it a bit of water. Remember there are no drainage holes so water carefully, not letting it overflow.
To plant a teapot you will have to add some soil until it reaches a level suitable for planting. Use a mix of cascading and upright plants such as Marigolds, Violas, Bacopa, mini Petunias or Lobelia. Plant them and add soil as needed being sure that the roots of each plant are covered.
Water your plants up until the plant sale. On the day before the sale, have the children make cards saying “Happy Mother’s Day”. Using a hole punch, make a hole and thread some ribbon through and tie it on to the tea cup and teapot handles. Score the ribbon to make it curly.
The children love making their special tea cups and will bring their parents to the sale in hopes of buying their own tea cup gift.
Have the children be part of the sale by assigning them to take care of the money. This is great for older children and lets them use their math skills.Younger children can make posters and signage needed for the event. Be sure to place a notice about your plant sale in the school newsletter or hold it on an event night at the school.