Plant a Living Easter Basket: Celebrate Easter Naturally Series

Easter is still a month away which gives you plenty of time to grow your own Easter grass!  This is a super easy project and a wonderful surprise for the little ones on Easter morning.  Imagine their delight when they find their Easter goodies nestled in real grass.  Or… invite the kids to join in on the preparation.  Planting baskets of grass is a fun and educational gardening project to do with children.

Plastic Easter grass is more than just a nuisance. It is made from petroleum, doesn’t biodegrade and is potentially harmful to children and animals if they try to ingest it. I don’t know about your kids or pets, but my cats LOVE to eat shredded things like ribbon and plastic Easter grass.  Not good.  By planting your own edible grass you won’t have to worry about it being ingested and you can even juice it or set it out for the cats as “kitty grass” after your Easter celebration is over.

Live Grass Pots

Photo Credit: Will Merydith

Living Easter baskets are perfect to use for the kids’ Easter baskets or for decorative center pieces.  Start this project two to three weeks before Easter, depending on the type of grass seed you use.

Update:  If you don’t have time to grow your own grass from seed you can try this shortcut for a living grass basket using already grown wheatgrass.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Baskets – My favorite Easter baskets are real baskets that can be used year after year, every Easter.  I still have the same beautiful baskets that I had when I was a small child.  Or you can incorporate another craft into the living Easter Basket project and make your own baskets out of egg cartons, recycled construction paper or paper grocery bags.
  • Basket liner – Use naturally waxed paper (conventional waxed paper is coated with petroleum based paraffin wax), a plastic bread bag or other plastic bag that you’d be tossing anyway or a reusable planting tray from your local nursery that will fit inside the basket (don’t forget to take the baskets to the nursery with you for size comparison if you decide to use a planting tray).
  • Organic potting soilArmstrong Garden Center sells a wonderful organic potting soil (in addition to organic compost).
  • Organic seeds – Use any organic grass seed of your choice.  Wheatgrass grows quickly and is great for juicing.  You can also try oat or rye grass. You can find organic wheatgrass seed here as well as organic rye and oat grass seeds. Also check your local Whole Foods or plant nursery for organic grass seeds.

Steps:

1.  Line the baskets with your liner of choice – waxed paper, egg carton material, reused plastic or reusable tray.

2.  Fill the lined basket with two inches of organic potting soil.

3.  Sprinkle grass seeds over the top of the soil.

4.  Sprinkle just enough soil over the seeds to cover them.

5.  Water daily.

Live Grass Basket

Photo Credit: Photographer Unknown

Keep the baskets in a spot where they won’t be disturbed and be sure to keep the soil moist.  In a few days the seeds will sprout and you can move the basket to a sunny spot.  Continue to water and within two to three weeks (7-10 days for wheatgrass) you’ll have a beautiful bed of grass.

After your Easter celebration you can let the cats enjoy their own patch of “kitty grass” or you can gently move your homegrown grass to a spot outside and watch it continue to grow.  If you used wheatgrass you can juice it!  Or throw it in your compost pile (after it’s dried out).

Check back for more ways to celebrate Easter naturally.

Share your pictures or other Easter craft ideas below!

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