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8 messages
15/06/2013 at 21:58

Hi there

I am setting up a gardening club at school and am new to gardening. Was wondering if anybody could tell me what tools I should look at purchasing that are suitable for children who range in age from 5 to 11.

Thanks

Nathalie

16/06/2013 at 09:35

I would look at hand tools as something they will be able to manage easily - trowel, hand fork etc. You can also get small spades and forks ( normally called "ladies" or "border".) 

Trugs for weeds etc are also good.  

Often the supermarket schools tokens leave gardening equipment available.  And checkout the RHS website as they have a big "gardening for schools" campaign going at the moment and might have a few factsheets/ handy tips.  Have fun 

16/06/2013 at 10:00

I run a school gardening club. Hand forks and trowels (as Chicky said) are our most used tools. We have raised beds mainly. However if you are working the open ground child sized spades, forks and a rake or two would probably be used.

We are members of the RHS school campaign and have been awarded seeds, a paper pot maker and garden centre vouchers through the scheme. We also hold plant sales to help finance ourselves. It is worth getting friendly with your local DIY or garden centre manager as they (on occasion) knock down the price for a friendly pushy garden club leader!!

The most used and disposable item we use are gardenng gloves...they are like socks..."I can't find the other one, Miss" is a constant refrain at our school.

I have been running our club for several years now and love it. I wish you all the best with yours and if you have any other questions or queries I will try to help. 

16/06/2013 at 10:23

Thank you both so much for your replies.

I am looking forward to really getting stuck in in September. Had a trial run over the last two terms and purchased a few hand trowels and forks myself, as well as pots, compost, seeds etc. Wztching the children's faces as I handed them a tomato plant seedling to take home and look after at the end of last week's session was absolutely priceless.

Unfortunately, the school is in an area where vandalism is rife.  This means that I have to think of ways in which I can make the garden as portable as possible. Large containers seem to be the way forward at the moment as does a lockable, heavy duty storage container, but as you know all these things cost a lot of money. I am also hoping to plant a wildflower garden which will, hopefully, attract bees and butterflies and not vandals!

Thanks again

16/06/2013 at 14:05

what area are you in? Whilst sorting through some gardening tools which I nolonger used /duplicates of others I was thinking what a pity I couldnt hand them on .Then I saw your topic . But even if I am not near you maybe it may be worth asking round your area .

16/06/2013 at 16:04

Use the school community board or newsletter to help get small pots  and any extra plants, seeds etc recycled to the school. RHS encourage a parent day in October (usually) we got some parents in to put together raised planters and shift compost etc. I'm in greater London - Essex and although I didn't get much response at first I am now known as 'the garden lady' and get reports of who pulled off daffodil heads, pinched strawberries and have a watering team at lunch times.

I am also constantly asked by staff and parents for advice about all manner of gardening concerns....

16/06/2013 at 16:06

Oh also meant to say what about your local secondary school. Do they have a garden? You could make enquiries if any of the staff or pupils might like to mentor you and the younger children, swap plants or the like.

16/06/2013 at 21:55

Thanks for the ideas

@ lucky3 I am in Cardiff

I am putting together a funding bid for a Tesco Community Grant at the moment which would go a long way if successful.

Am also looking into building a link with a local community garden group who may be able to help with ideas and sharing seeds etc. Taking up a lot of my limited 'free' time but am sure it will all be worth it in the end 

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