Do-It-Yourself: Poetry Planters

Year

2010
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Celebrate spring and National Poetry Month by decorating a poetry planter and growing your own houseplant from seeds.

Supplies:
Soup can
Construction Paper
Scissors
Tape or glue
Pencils or markers
Toothpicks
Water
Avocado Seed

Optional:
Stickers
Clay Pot
Soil
Sunflower seeds, catnip seed, or green beans (for other easy-to-grow seedlings)

Instructions:

1. Remove any labels from your soup can.
2. Wrap a piece of paper around the can. Mark its height as well as where the two ends of the paper meet in pencil.
3. Cut paper.
4. Write a poem on your new label and decorate as you see fit. Read some recommended spring poems or poems about flowers for ideas.
5. Tape or glue the paper around the can so that it meets at both ends.

For seedlings
6. Rinse avocado pit.
7. Fill can with water.
8. With the broad end at the bottom, pierce the seed with three toothpicks so that it suspends from the top of the can—leaving about an inch of the seed submerged in water.
9. Place your can somewhere warm and not in direct sunlight.
10. Wait two to six weeks for seed to fully sprout, replacing water as needed.

11. When the stem is about six inches tall, prune it down to three inches to encourage new growth.
12. When the roots are thicker and more leaves have grown, transfer your plant to a larger clay pot and give it plenty of water and sunlight.

The final product can be an attractive houseplant, or you can replant it outdoors and see it eventually become a fruitful avocado tree—with poetic roots.