mini gardeners

inspiring gardening projects for children

No Tesco in Ancient Greece

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I’ve been gardening with a group of year 3 schoolchildren who have Ancient Greece as their topic this term.

The Ancient Greeks were early adopters of the “grow your own” movement, mainly out of necessity as there wasn’t a Tesco metro on every street corner.

So today we planted a mini Ancient Greek garden to showcase some of the plants that would have been grown for food in Ancient Greece.

Ancient Greek garden

Ancient Greek garden

Our planting list:

  • an olive tree (not sure how many olives we’ll get in London, especially with no BBQ summer in sight)
  • a grape vine (used to provide grapes to eat and also for making wine – they drank a lot of wine in Ancient Greece, must have been very jolly)
  • legumes (i.e. peas and beans.  My research (a bit of googling) didn’t reveal exactly which legumes might have been grown in Ancient Greece so we used the peas that we’d sown last term.)
  • herbs for flavouring food

– parsley

– thyme

– mint

– and coriander to follow soon

As I happened to have a bag full of shells I needed to dispose of, we edged our farm with shells to symbolise the fact that the Ancient Greeks ate a lot of fish.  They were not huge meat eaters, often only eating meat if they had sacrificed an animal to the Gods.  In fact, placing the shells round the edge was the most popular part of the whole session.  Next time we might forget the plants and just make patterns in the soil with shells.


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