It's time for a Powerful Plants review and a giveaway. I was sent a book, The Carrot Napping and four packages of kid friendly garden seeds by Powerful Plants. They have offered two reader giveaways! Both winners will receive the book, The Carrot Napping. One person will also win 36 packages of seeds and the other will win 12 packages of seeds.
These seeds can be used by anybody (of course), but they are geared towards making gardening fun and educational for kids. Read on for the Powerful Plants review and giveaway!
Powerful Plants Review: The Seeds
I received Daucus (the Red Cored Chantenay Carrot), Tom Thumb (the Shell Pea), Amish Paste (the Paste Tomato), and White Icicle (the White Icicle Radish). The packaging is super cute and definitely geared towards children. The varieties themselves are not necessarily ones I would pick for kids (bush beans, paste tomatoes, and kale for example), but they have 36 different seeds to choose from so I don't think they were going for kid varieties as much as making all seeds fun for kids.
Each seed is also a character that can be brought to life by using an app (smartphone or tablet).
For obvious reasons, I can't give you a Powerful Plants review of the seeds themselves since I do not have time to grow them, but they are all organic and the packaging is great.
Powerful Plants Review: The Book(s)
Right now there is only one book for this Powerful Plants review, Volume 1, The Carrot Napping. The books are meant to “edutain”. Children can read the page, answer 3 questions, and if they get correct answers they are rewarded with the plant character coming to life on the screen.
Powerful Plants Review: The Positives
- I love the characters and that they can be brought to life
- I love the kid-friendly drawings and seed packets
- I really love the kid-friendly facts they include with each page of the book (the first carrots were probably purple)
I would let my kids use the seeds and read the book (I would take out the page I talk about in the negative section). I would probably not use the app for the reasons outlined below and because it seems to be huge! I tried downloading it to my iPad, but 2.5 hours later it was still around 35% downloaded and then it stopped. I was able to see some of the videos on their website and I apologize for not being able to see more for the Powerful Plants review, but I just couldn't get it downloaded. Powerful Plants Review: the Negative Not all reviews are completely positive and this is one of them for me. I do love the idea and 95% of the book/seeds. I would happily still use them for my kids, but I would skip the section of the book that I am about to talk about. In volume one that is one page of the 47 page book. The downside to the book is that it presents a very black and white picture of some complicated topics. The way they present it seems scary for a young child, but dumbed down for an older child. Here is their own description of what the books are about:
The selfish seven (all humans, all the seed characters are good), headed by Grendal Greed, with sidekicks like Mean Gene, Frackin' Frank, Lazy Larry, and Wasteful Wally, are hell bent on harming our planet. By teaming together, kids and Powerful Plant characters can stop them.
I am not a fan of GMO plants (head over to my post on GMO vs heirloom seeds if you want more information), but I really dislike the way they present the information in this book. This first book introduces Mean Gene and Grendal Greed. I am guessing we would meet the other 5 characters that are “hell bent on harming our planet” in later volumes. The carrot is kidnapped and taken to a “secret underground laboratory” by a scientist who is going to do genetic research on him. The book tells the kids that soon “they” (the scientists?) will do that to “even farm animals”. It tells the kids that “some studies show it can make animals and humans sick” (no reference) and they were able to “somehow convince the people in our government who are in charge of keeping the food supply safe to allow these seeds to be sold”. And, “one of the selfish seven, Lazy Larry is always telling farmers how great it is and how much easier it will make their lives”. The reference to the “Selfish Seven” was the most confusing part. I scoured the book and seeds trying to find out who they were. It is not there, those are characters that will be introduced in later books or on the individual page apps. I won't sugar coat it. I'm a scientist (or was before we decided I would stay home with the kiddos) and I have never known anybody who sneaks off in the night to kidnap a lovable character to torture him (the picture definitely looks like torture). I wouldn't show this page to my 2 year old (too scary), 5 year old (he would have so many questions that this book just doesn't answer), or 7 year old (he is old enough to see references not just scare tactic claims). Many of the “extra” material on the app also goes into some scare tactic type arguments, but you don't know what you are going to see until you actually get to the app. I would recommend watching everything before your kiddo just in case there is something you don't want them to see. Full disclosure, I try very hard to stay away from GMO, haven't stepped foot into a Walmart in ten years (Wasteful Wally?), am definitely against fracking so you would think I would be a target audience for them. But, I would have issues with my kids seeing information presented in this way. If you are okay with any of those things then you might have even more of an issue. The app also happens to be huge. I tried downloading it and 2.5 hours later I still only had 30% downloaded.
Powerful Plants Review: Contests
This series also gives children a chance to enter some fun contests. They can earn points towards a grand prize contest (4 day farm trip to their 50 acre organic farm in Northeastern Pennsylvana) by taking photos with characters, recording a music video, growing carrots, and designing a character.
Powerful Plants Review: Childrens' Book & Seed Giveaway!
Enter for a chance to win one of these great prizes…
The Carrot Napping Book plus 36 packets of seeds – valued at $114.95 + shipping!
The Carrot Napping Book plus 12 packets of seeds – valued at $55.35 + shipping!
These prizes generously donated by Powerful Plants!
“We live in a time when children often grow up isolated from nature. Powerful Plants stories and characters re-connect kids with plants and the world outdoors. The idea is to “edutain” – creating a bridge between useful information, technology, and the outdoors, in a fun, kid-friendly way.”