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11 Jun 2018
Planting the Seeds of Hope

For the past 4 years, we have had the honor of being a small part of Kaiser Permanente's Seeds of Hope.  It's a truly lovely event.  Kaiser Permanente, a CA-based managed care consortium, invites cancer survivors and their families to spend the day enjoying healthy snacks, taking Zumba and wellness classes, visiting informational booths, getting a massage, and creating arts and crafts (that's where we come in).

This year we decided to set up a garden themed craft table. It was a huuuuge hit.  There's something about connecting to the earth and nature that appeals to most people.  I was blown away by the success of our set up and thought it would be fun to share some tips on making your own flower potting zone.

The best thing about potting flowers is you can go as simple or as elaborate as you want.  We of course, went to the extreme and supplied everything from googly eyes to stick on jewels, but you can keep things very basic and still have amazing results.

We broke our craft table into 4 steps.  Each step was run by one of the amazing volunteers.  

Choose your pot.  

We had a nice selection of 4-inch terracotta pots which we purchased at Lowe's for less than $1.00 each.  We also had 48 glazed pots from an event we did a year ago, so we threw those into the mix as well.   We had our guest choose their pot and write their name on the bottom.

Decorate your pot.

A good portion of the station was dedicated to decorating supplies.  Should you wish to keep things simple and cost-effective, you might want to just supply acrylic paints and brushes.  However, if you have some budget I would suggest investing in some Uni Posca paint markers.  These markers provide the look and finish of paint, with the neatness and control of a pen.  We also offered up stickers, googley eyes, jewels, buttons and other fun embellishments. 

Some folks loved the embellishments which they attached with heavy duty glue dots.  Others were drawn to the simplicity of drawing on the pots.  And still others were engrossed by the stickers.  The best part about offering this many options was there was something for everyone

even Sharkie, the San Jose Shark's mascot  was able to get into the action.

Plant your flower.

Guests lined the bottom of their pot with a few small pebbles to aid in drainage when watering.  Some experts say that this is not necessary, as long as you have a proper drainage hole in your pot, but it's the way I was taught so we offered it up. 

A small scoop of soil was then placed on top of the rocks and the guest chose their flower.  We used marigolds because they are pretty hardy and colorful.  I was able to purchase many 12 packs of the plants, ensuring that everyone received a blooming flower to plant.  We popped the flower out of the plastic cup, had guests break up the roots a bit, then place directly into the pot.  More soil was added to secure the plant in the pot and then we had guests give the plants a little misting of water.

 

Bag it up.

To ensure that guests could keep their plants safe while walking around and enjoying all the other booths.  We used form-fitting handle bags that we found at the Dollar Tree.  We had the crafters write their names on the bag so they didn't lose them.

Our team had so much fun with this craft, primarily because the guests were so engaged and so positive. 

Hat's off to Kaiser for providing such a wonderful event for their patients and the doctors who treat them.  It truly is a day of hope and wellness.