Youth Horticulture Curriculum, Resources and Activities

What is 4-H Horticulture?

In this project area, participants learn about plants, insects, landscape design, soils, and more through experiential projects.  The projects encourage exploration, utilize critical thinking skills and expose participants to career opportunities.  This 4-H pathway supports learning for youth and families in every community (and you don't need to have a farm). 

Included on this page are a variety of supports from curriculum and one time activities to general resources to help 4-H volunteers and educators working with youth in 4-H clubs, 4-H special interest programs (SPIN), and classrooms support youth as they explore horticulture.


Junior Master Gardener (JMG): This curriculum engages children in novel, “hands-on” group and individual learning experiences that promote a love of gardening, develop an appreciation for the environment, and cultivate the mind.  The curriculum available through JMG is easily to implement in a 4-H club, 4-H special interest program (SPIN), or classroom.

Grow with the Flow: Cornell Cooperative Extension has created a 10 session project-based curriculum foucusing on hydroponics,  The curriculm includes simple instructions for constructing 2 different types of hydroponic units, setting plants, observing growth, and harvesting. Entomology, physics, social studies, marketing, math, nutrition and careers in horticulture, are integrated into the basic plant science focus. These projects are best suited for middle-school aged youth, and allows for a balanced approach with group and individual activities.

4-H Gardening: Purdue Extension offers a four level, multi-year gardening curriculum with helpers guide.  As youth work through hands-on age appropriate activities, they learn basic gardening skills and knowledge that build on one another.  As a youth progress they are introduce to topics beyond the traditional garden such as hydroponics.

Additional Curriculum Available:



Purple Plow-Purple Plow is a national program that engages youth in creating solutions for real-world, complex issues related to agriculture.  Challenges run three times a year (January 1 - May 1, May 15 - August 1, and August 15 - November 1).  Participating groups have the chance to enter and win a 3D printer and a $100 Visa gift card!