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Earth Day Craft: Tin Can Herb Pots

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I am finishing up my Earth Day posts this week and then will start the Teacher Appreciation Gifts!

Children want to be a part of Earth Day and there are many ways that you can encourage that desire. One way is to provide them with the materials to make an Earth Day craft. Tin can herb pots are a great way to learn to recycle and learn about growing herbs.


What is a tin can herb pot, you might ask? It’s nothing more than a recycled tin can that has been washed out, decorated, and has herb seeds planted in it. There’s nothing difficult about the craft, but an adult may want to ensure the edges of the can aren’t sharp so that little ones don’t get hurt.

You may want plan ahead for this craft. Find one of the newer can openers that don’t leave sharp edges when used. These can be found at nearly any discount store for a couple of dollars. You might actually find that you prefer this type of can opener over the older type.

Why not make a number of these tin can herb pots? You can make one for any herb you might use in your kitchen. Chives, oregano, rosemary, thyme, and basil are good choices. They can be grown from seeds or you can buy plants for the craft, depending upon the amount of patience your little crafter has.

1. Save a number of aluminum cans of different sizes. If you didn’t use the newer can opener, you may need to sand off any rough edges to stop crafters from being cut.

2. Completely wash out the can with soap and water and then let it dry. Turn up the can upside down and punch some holes in the bottom of the can to allow for drainage.

3. Let your child decorate the outside of the can by using an acrylic base coat. They can then paint any design they like on the can. Be sure that any paints you use are safe for children. Next, the outside of the can should be sprayed with an acrylic sealer so the paint won’t come off.

4. Place rocks or pebbles in the bottom of the can and then add potting soil until the can is filled two-thirds of the way up the can.

5. Transplant a potted herb into the can and fill the rest of the can with potting soil. Gently pat the plant into the dirt, but don’t press too firmly. You want the plant to have some room for water to seep through. Place the can on a plate to catch any extra water.

6. If you’ve opted for seeds, fill the can nearly full with potting soil. Place a couple of seeds in the soil and then cover it with a thin layer of soil. Be sure to keep the soil damp, but not soaked.

One four-inch potted plant will probably make at least two, if not three, herb pots. Remind your little ones to take care of their plants. If you have more than you need, why not give them to a loved one this Earth Day? They’re sure to enjoy fresh herbs when the time comes to cook.

Be sure to check out these Earth Day activities and crafts for kids.

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