All three of these sets can be found at Building Blocks Toys
and are great for little green thumbs:
- Caitlin Murray Giles
Families do not live in Chicago because we want big back yards.
We make do with small gardening spaces, standard city lots, condo
balconies, patios or small decks. Or, sometimes, we just put a
planter in the windowsill. Chicago also is home to some amazing
resources to make gardeners out of your little ones.
You cannot talk about urban gardening without mentioning
the youth center. The center, a resource for kids from all walks of
life, stands on the cutting edge of youth education through urban
agriculture with its two acre-plus vegetable gardens on the rooftop
and across the street. Tons of summer camp and after-school
programs are offered.
Sara Gasbarra, at the forefront of the edible gardening
movement, started a company to help local restaurateurs grow
rooftop gardens. Gasbarra also does at-home consultations that can
turn any space into an edible feast. For kids, she recommends
growing plants that thrive in city-style planters such as sorrel,
anise hyssop, Mexican gherkin cucumbers and sungold
The Lincoln Park Zoo's Farm in the Zoo has hands-on gardening
and educational activities April-November on Wednesdays, Thursdays
and Saturdays. Best of all, it's free.
More than 150 varieties of vegetables, herbs and edible
flowers are grown. Kids of all ages get a chance to experience
growing food while learning valuable nutrition lessons. Located at
the intersection of East Congress Parkway and South Columbus
Sara Fisher is a mother of two living in Roscoe Village. She also blogs at selfmademom.net.
See more of Sara's stories here.
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