Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Ladybugs and Gardens: A Good Day

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

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We are working on a plant unit for science. We have fresh lettuce, herbs and whatever other veggies we can produce in our very small backyard. So the kids are familiar with gardening and a plant's life cycle. That said, going to a real farm, with real space, makes for a fun (schoolish) field trip to enhance our lesson. If I have initial advice for homeschoolers it would certainly include field trips, lots of field trips.

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And so, based on a high review from Kristianne, we hit a local little gem of a garden. It's run by folks with a passion for good, organic food, not high production farming. We happened to show up on volunteer Wednesday so there were a few wise gardeners there to answer our myriad of inquisitions.

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Oh the delight to find artichokes (clearly one of Anna's favs) and rhubarb!

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As with any good garden we encountered some ladybugs. Naturally, more questions...How can you tell if a ladybug is a boy or girl? (Answer: It can be difficult, but size is an indicator) And so on...

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Eventually, the breeze and sunshine beckoned us to the pergola for some sketching and snacking.

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Much observation and consideration went into adding our new ladybug friends, Louis and Loretta, to the sketchbook.

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As with any good dining al fresco, the ambiance of the garden included a bocce ball set. Parker took a great liking to the idea of it and even felt inclined to change things up a bit. You know, to help his game.

We will certainly be heading back to take a class--from seed to plate--and will frequent the market on Saturdays.

Louis and Loretta didn't make it home with us. So we took a pittstop at the local nursery for our own supply of aphid eaters. Did you know that if you put your container of ladybugs in the refrigerator the little speckled ones fall asleep? And since it's best to release them at night a little bit at a time, the sleepiness factor works in your favor. Just take them out of the fridge and put a group on your intended host and repeat for a few nights in a row. Your chances of the ladybugs making your garden their home are better, so THEY say.

We'll be the judge of that with our first release this evening.

1 comment:

the sweet life with olives said...

that looks like a wonderful day! it's such a nice thing to see your family embark on the homeschooling journey and follow you on your adventures. not to mention i now have a strange desire to add a bocce court to our garden!