We have been learning about the life cycle of plants since spring, when we planted seeds, and we enjoyed many colourful flowers over the summer in our Nursery gardens.
You can extend this learning by growing cress at home. Cress seeds are perfect as they grow quickly and can be planted in soil or even grown on paper towels or cotton wool. You can buy seeds online or from any garden centre.
For a quick crop at any time of year, simply sprinkle your cress seeds onto the surface of a damp piece of kitchen towel. Gently press the seeds down to ensure they make contact with the moisture, place the towel into a shallow container and cover with cling film to prevent them from drying out. Seed can germinate within 24 hours and within 5-7 days your cress will be ready to eat. Snip the tops off when they’re around an inch tall and enjoy in sandwiches.
You can even plant your seeds in empty egg shells to make an ‘egg head’. Once you have eaten your hard boiled eggs, draw faces on the shells and fill with damp cotton wool. Sow your seeds onto it.
We handed out cress seeds to children in Nursery and were delighted to see them being planted at home. Gaining a basic understanding of how a plant grows now will help children apply and understand these ideas later in their school life.
What are the stages in the life cycle of a plant?
There are five stages in the life cycle of a plant:
- Germination – When conditions like temperature and water are right, a seed starts to grow.
- Roots – Roots will start to grow, normally underground, to reach water and nutrients.
- Leaves – Leaves will grow and form above ground to help a plant make its own food using light.
- Flowering – Beautiful flowers grow and are full of pollen, which is used to make seeds.
- Seed Dispersal – Seeds are scattered and spread out to grow in new places and make sure more of this plant can grow.
We’d love to see pictures of your cress. Please tag us in any photos you share: @childrenscornerchildcare on Facebook and Instagram.