Click for the latest information from FAR
Adding Value To The Business of Cropping

Garden in a glove

Learning Intentions:

    Students will be able to:
  • observe seeds of different sizes, shapes and colours
  • discover the conditions needed for germination and which parts of a seedling grow first
  • observe different seedling growth rates.


  • You can buy clear, plastic gloves from most hardware stores.
  • Soak your cotton wool balls before you start the activity.

What You Will Need:

  • Large sized clear gloves.
  • A range of different seeds (five minimum), e.g. pea, sunflower, bean, beetroot, carrot, onion. Larger seeds a best.
  • Permanent marker pens.
  • Cotton wool balls.
  • Long-handled spoons for inserting seeds into glove fingers.
  • Plastic pipettes.
  • Water.
Garden in a glove less than two weeks after sowing.

What to do

  1. Choose five types of seeds and write their names on the glove fingers.
  2. Soak your cotton wool balls in water, then allow to drain so they are just damp. Try not to squeeze them flat.
  3. Push a cotton ball into each finger. The blunt end of a pencil is useful.
  4. Use a long-handled spoon to place seeds onto each cotton ball. If the seeds are large, like bean, just add one to each cotton ball.
  5. Blow the glove up with your mouth and seal it so it stays inflated.
  6. Tape your glove, with the fingers hanging down, to a window pane in partial sun.

    The steps are shown below.
Fingers labelled.
Cotton balls added.
Spoon used to add seeds.
Inflated ready for window.
Inflated glove taped to a window in partial sun. Don't put it in full sun as the seedlings may overheat and die.


  1. Look carefully at your seedlings each day. Do they sprout differently?
  2. Keep a journal or take photos to record the changes.
  3. If the cotton wool starts to dry, add drops of water with a pipette and re-seal the glove.
  4. Open up the top of your glove as the seedlings get bigger.

Hints and tips

  • Choose a window that doesn’t get too hot, else the seedlings may overheat and die.
  • Prepare a comparison glove that is exactly the same, except without using water. The outcome will highlight the need for water in germination.

Related resources

Grassy numbers

Microgreen sandwiches

Egg carton caterpillar

Egg grass heads