Kids Go Gardening - the hairy caterpillar
You might remember reading The Hungry Caterpillar when you were smaller, the story about the caterpillar who ate a mountain of food and turned into a beautiful butterfly.
Making your own Hungry Caterpillar is easy and fun! Emily made hers out of stockings and grass seed.
What you need:
- Potting mix
- Grass seed
- A knee-high stocking
How to make it:
- Mix the grass seed into the soil mixture and pour into the stocking.
- When the stocking is just about full, section it off with rubber bands or twine to make the caterpillar shape.
- Tie off the end.
- Put your caterpillar in water for ten minutes to give it a good soak then put it in a plastic bag overnight.
- Take it out of the bag the next day and add some eyes and caterpillar antennae – pipe cleaners are good for that. Emily’s caterpillar has very googly eyes!
- Leave in a sunny spot.
Water your caterpillar every couple of days and watch it get hairier and hungrier over the next few weeks!
A few surprising facts about caterpillars
- A caterpillar has only one job – to eat!
They eat a huge amount for several weeks and will eat 27,000 times their body weight during this life phase.
- Caterpillars can increase their body mass by as much as 1,000 times or more!
- When a caterpillar hatches from its egg, it eats the eggshell.
- Muscle man! A caterpillar has up to 4,000 muscles in its body (us humans have around 629)
- Caterpillars have 12 eyes but don’t have great eyesight!
- Caterpillars have only 6 real legs – the others are called prolegs, which helps them hold on and climb.