Posted on 03 July 2012 by

Gardening with Children – Create a Peter Rabbit Garden

By Mindy McIntosh-Shetter

The other day, I was asked to create a garden space based on a children’s book.

I thought and thought about my favorite books as a youth.

Many titles came to mind but none of them really fit into a garden design until . . . A community gardener approached me with a rabbit problem and there it was a classic children’s book Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter.

This design can be created in a traditional manner by tilling and processing the soil or in a container garden.

To create your own Peter Rabbit Garden, you will first need a few plants, sets and/or seeds. You will need onion sets, carrot seeds, lettuce, cabbage plants, radishes, and parsley. Once you have your plant and/or seeds, the next step is to prepare the planting medium. For this project, I am going to describe how to build a Peter Rabbit Garden in a container.

The container will need to be at least six inches deep and about a foot wide. Prior to planting, clean the container in a solution of water and a capful of bleach. Let the container soak for 10 minutes, scrub as needed and then rinse in clear water. Place outside to dry.

After it has dried, place drainage material in the bottom while making sure to cover the drainage holes. Fill the container half full with a good quality potting soil mix. Once that is done, plant the onion sets around the edge of the planter and then fill in with potting soil until the soil line reaches ½ inch from the top.

Once this is done, plant the cabbage in the middle of the container. Then move two inches from the cabbage and create a shallow ring. In this ring, plant the lettuce seed. Move two inches more and create another shallow ring. In this ring, plant carrots. Create another shallow ring two inches away and plant the parsley. The last ring will be the one that contains the onion sets below. On top of the onion sets, plant the radishes.

Water the container until water comes out the drainage holes and place in a sunny location.

When the vegetables are ready to harvest, pull out Peter Rabbit and share it with your kid gardener. To make it even more special, consider growing chamomile in the garden for chamomile tea. Hint, this herb is part of the story.

So until we blog again, rabbits no longer have to be the enemy of the garden space but instead can bring families together for nourishment and enrichment for both mind and soul.

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