“Thanks For Helping Me Grow” Potted Salad: End-Of-Year Teacher Gift

Jun 17, 2016

Since the end of the school year is just around the corner, my daughter and I have been thinking about gifts for her teacher and other helpers at school.

During our brainstorming session, she asked what kind of gifts I received when I was teaching. One came to mind immediately: a beautiful hand-painted pot filled with gorgeous flowers and a tag that read “thank you for helping me grow!”

It was from the sweetest little boy during my first year teaching kindergarten. So cute, right? Well, my daughter fell in love with the idea immediately, so we decided to put our own little twist on it for her teacher—we made it edible!

You Will Need:

Here’s what you’ll need to make your own potted salad garden gift:

  • a clay pot
  • acrylic paints
  • paintbrushes
  • several lettuce and/or fresh herb starter plants
  • potting soil
  • a pair of scissors to include with the gift
  • a card stock tag
  • a permanent marker
  • twine

What you'll to make your own potted salad garden gifts.


Alright, let’s get started! First things first, invite your little one to paint the pot. You may wish to incorporate the teacher’s favourite colours if you know them, but truly, anything goes here! 

My quick tips for a truly finished look:

  • use at least two coats of paint to cover the surface of the pot (the first one can be a plain white coat, to really make the colours pop)
  • paint the entire outside of the pot and an inch or two down inside the pot (so the colour goes all the way to where the soil will be)

A pot painted turquoise.

Next up, you’ll want to prep the base of your pot with some potting soil. The amount of soil you need will depend on the height of your pot and the depth of the soil on your starter plants—the plants should come up to the paint line on your pot.

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Remove starter plants from their plastic pots and arrange them in your large clay pot as you choose. We placed our tallest plant (chives) in the centre and then put the shorter plants (butter lettuce and rainbow kale) around it, which I think makes for a visually pleasing arrangement. 

With your plants in place, fill in all the gaps with extra potting soil and pat it down in place to ensure everything is snug.

A child plants lettuce and herbs in a clay pot.

Now it’s time for the tag. You can buy tags or simply cut one out of a heavy paper and add a hole using a hole punch—either way is absolutely fine.

For the message, my daughter chose to write “thanks for helping me grow!” on ours, which is a little cheesy, but super sweet at the same time. 

A potted salad in a pot.

As a final step, find a good spot to stick a pair of gardening scissors into the soil and tie the tag around the handle (these will come in handy when it’s time to snip some fresh herbs and lettuce for dinner!).

That’s it! Your lovely edible gift is complete and ready for giving!

Article Author Jen Kossowan
Jen Kossowan

See all of Jen's posts.

Jen is a teacher, blogger, and mama to a spirited little lady and a preemie baby boy. She's passionate about play, loves a good DIY project, adores travelling, and can often be found in the kitchen creating recipes that meet her crunchy mama criteria. You can follow Jen on her blog, Mama.Papa.Bubba, and on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

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