Oregon Ag Fest Craft: A Farmer’s Dirt Baby

 

There are so many amazing booths and things for kids to do at the Oregon Ag Fest. There are animals, mini train rides, pony rides and so many great hands on activities. Your kids will get the opportunity to dig and plant and leave with a bag of agricultural treasures!

One of the many fun things we did this year was visit the Farmer’s Dirt Baby booth (put on by the OFB Ag Education committee.)

A Farmer’s Dirt Baby is basically a stocking full of grass seed and dirt that is embellished with various googly eyes, puff balls, jewels, pipe cleaners, etc. When put into a container full of water (we used mason jars) these dirt babies will start growing grass “hair” on the top of their heads! It makes for an absolutely fascinating at-home gardening experiment!

Volunteers were at the booth helping put these little creations together, but you could easily make one of your own at home!

 

From the OFB Ag Education Committee’s Farmer’s Dirt Baby instruction sheet:

MATERIALS REQUIRED FOR ONE DIRT BABY

-One knee high stocking hose

-1 tablespoon of seed (annual ryegrass or other seed)

-2 (8 oz) cups of soil

-decorations of felt, pipe cleaners, wiggle eyes, etc

-scissors and hot glue gun

DIRECTIONS

-Open knee high hose and roll it down

-Put the seed in the toe of the hose (which is the head)

-Put the potting soil on top, pack by shaking (you will have a ball) leave 6-7 inches for a wick then cut off the rest of the hose. Decorate your dirt baby.

CARE OF THE DIRT BABY:

-You need to put the baby in a small clear container or glass that is small enough at the mouth so baby’s head can sit on top of the rim. Fill container with water to the base of the head. Keep container full of water. In 3-7 days the baby will begin to sprout hair! In two weeks the baby will have lots of hair and be in need of it’s first haircut! If the baby keeps being fed water it will continue to grow! Enjoy your dirt baby and remember that all baby’s need names by the time they have hair!

Since all of these babies need names by the time they have hair I asked my kids to think long and hard about what to name theirs.

Without further ado I give you “Janna” on the left and the aptly named “Dirt Baby” on the right!

 

DAY 1: Janna and Dirt Baby

IMG_3969

 

Day 5: WE HAVE HAIR!! I decided not to add any water so we could see how much they were ‘drinking.’ A lot. My kids were amazed. They were SO excited to see the hair!

 

DAY 7: The hair just keeps growing!

IMG_4069

 

And by DAY 10: Full heads of hair!! It’s almost time for a cut!

IMG_4497

 

Thank you so much OFB Ag Education committee for providing the supplies for these awesome Farmer’s Dirt Babies and for organizing such a great activity booth at the Oregon Ag Fest every year!

 

For more information and other great resources and activities please visit:

ag_education

http://oragfest.com/

 

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