Do plants have stomachs and teeth? How are they able to catch prey like other carnivores if they can’t run? And when they catch insects, where do they go? These are mind-baffling questions indeed and certainly worthy of a little hands-on investigation! Scientists, biologists, and creepy-crawler lovers, are you ready to find out what happens when love bites this February? Eeeeew!
Did you know?
Carnivorous plants, also known as insectivorous plants, are those which get their nutrition by catching and digesting insects. How cool is that? Carnivory in plants is owing to centuries of evolution, driven by pure instinct to survive in areas with nitrogen-poor soil. There are over 600 known species of insectivorous plants around the world, time to get yours!
The deadliest devils
Here are a few carnivorous contenders that will make the perfect dissection specimen.
The dissection process:
A meaty-must-know: Make sure you know how your deadly devil likes their soil so that you can home them for good and keep adding to the collection. They flourish in “poor” moist soil with some acidity that activates their instinct to source nitrogen from insects.
This experiment is loaded with opportunities for exploration, discovery, and independent learning for the hungry young mind. Inspire your child to get in the garden and show them how awesome the natural world can be. Caring for a carnivorous plant is like having an exotic pet and requires much more attention than your average pot plant. Investing in one of these for the kids is a fantastic long-term project with countless “oh my word, it just ate a… coooool!”. #TeamGreenIsWinning
With World Water Day just around the corner, on the 22nd of March, Life is a Garden has put together an engaging water filtration experiment for the whole family. Get the kids involved and teach them about water pollution and how to get clean water.
Living in a drought-stricken country, water is a very precious resource. Sadly, many South African’s do not have access to clean water. Teaching kids about the importance of water in agriculture is an essential aspect of education and will help youngsters understand just how critical H2O is for a healthy environment.
This fun science experiment teaches kids about the importance of clean drinking water. It also demonstrates the process of how to clean dirty or polluted water using a natural filtration system.
You can make a water filter using recycled materials found at home. This water experiment is appropriate for kids aged ten and up, and can be used during science class or as a hands-on, educational experiment at home.
1. Cut an old plastic soda or juice bottle in half using scissors or a knife.
2. Place the bottle upside down into the glass jar..
3. Place cotton balls, cloth, or a coffee filter inside the bottle as the first layer. The first layer should be about two to three centimetres thick.
4. Add three to five centimetres of activated charcoal as the second layer, on top of the cotton layer.
5. Over the charcoal, add about three centimetres of fine sand as the third layer.
6. Add about three to four centimetres of gravel or small stones on top of the fine sand.
7. Add the rocks to the bottle as the final layer.
8. Add dirt to a glass of water to create muddy water. You can also get creative by adding other things materials such as glitter, beads, cooking oil or other materials to make dirty water.
Water filters reduce the concentration of contaminants such as suspended particles, parasites, bacteria, algae, viruses, and fungi. They remove particles and impurities from water. Each layer of the homemade water filter has a purpose: