Gardening with the kids is a rewarding and educational experience and a great chance to spend a little quality time together outdoors. Toddlers, kids and even young teens can all join in, and with early spring and mid term holidays there’s extra time to put down some roots in the garden and get a little exercise and outdoor air for your children. Plus, studies show that kids who learn to grow vegetables will more likely enjoy eating them!
Gardening is hands-on, mucky and great way for kids to learn about plants and nature, but where do you start?
Educating young kids about plants and growth is a great way to get kids interested in nature and how it relates to food. Plus, toddlers and kids will love to help you dig, sow seeds, design, and pick out different plants to grow. It won’t be neat, and may produce a few weeds but it will be an activity you can enjoy while getting your hands and clothes muddy.
Gardening doesn't mean you need heavy equipment or a degree in horticulture to get started. Anyone can do it and the best way to begin is to start simple!
If you treasure your garden, or don’t have one, then start with indoor window boxes. Remember, small kids (and big kids) will expect fast results from the garden so look for quick sprouting plants. Try herb seeds like basil or parsley or veg like broad beans or asparagus green seeds in a window box. Kids can help with digging and sowing, watch them grow and nibble on them when they get mature.
If you have bigger kids and the weather is mild and ground isn’t frozen over, wrap up and arm your family with some sturdy child sized gardening equipment. If you are a first time gardener and don’t know where to start then it’s worth doing some research before you begin. Plants needs light and good soil and drainage, so choose a spot that gets plenty of sunshine.
If you’re a dab hand with a green thumb, then kids will love to help planting and eating sprouting veg like snow peas, sugar snap peas that will grow high up onto bamboo or any type of trellis and can be sown in springtime.