Make a caterpillar garden for the kids

They'll love watching it sprout!

Entice your kids outdoors by helping them grow their own furry pet caterpillar. It’s a cinch to make! Simply fill a stocking with grass seeds, then it needs only a daily watering and a spot where it can bask in the sun. In about a week, your kids will delight in witnessing their new pal sprout a grassy coat, and enjoy trimming and styling it, too. Make just one or create a whole furry family!

Gather your supplies

  • 5 cups seed-raising mix
  • 5 Tbsp quick-sprouting grass seeds (such as rye-grass)
  • 2 paper or styrofoam cups n Nylon knee-high stocking
  • 4 hair ties
  • 2 googly eyes
  • 9 pipe-cleaners
  • 2 mini pompoms
  • Bucket
  • Scissors
  • Garbage bag
  • Large tray
  • Hot-glue gun
(Credit: Phil Aynsley)

Here’s how…

Step 1

Put seed-raising mix into bucket and add grass seeds. Stir mixture well to combine, making sure seeds are evenly distributed throughout mixture.

Step 2

Cut bottom off 1 cup to create a funnel, then insert into mouth of stocking. Holding stocking in 1 hand, use other cup to scoop seed mixture into stocking until it’s full.

(Credit: Phil Aynsley)

Step 3

Remove funnel, knot end and trim off any excess. Using hair ties, divide stocking into 5 sections to form your caterpillar’s body.

(Credit: Phil Aynsley)

Step 4

Fill bucket with water, then submerge stocking for at least 10 minutes. Remove and put on a large tray. Carefully slip tray inside garbage bag and set aside overnight.

(Credit: Phil Aynsley)

Step 5

Remove stocking from garbage bag and place in a sunny position on an outdoor table or bench. Water daily. In 7-10 days your caterpillar will start to sprout hair.

Step 6

Once grass appears, add eyes and antennae. Cut a pipe-cleaner in half then, using hot-glue gun, attach a googly eye to each. Insert both into stocking at untied end, curling up ends so your caterpillar’s new peepers sit up. 

Step 7

To make antennae, twist 2 pipe-cleaners together like a candy cane, then loop end of 1 pipe-cleaner around a pompom to secure it to top. Repeat to make other antenna. Insert both into stocking behind eyes.

(Credit: Phil Aynsley)

Step 8

Cut 4 pipe-cleaners in half. Bend into legs, then insert along stocking on each side.

Step 9

Trim grass with scissors to define sections and give your caterpillar a cool hairstyle.

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