Gardening with Kids

Gardening with Kids

It’s a win-win situation for everyone when you and your kids start a garden together. Kids learn a skill that could last a lifetime while spending quality time with their families.

In a garden, children can have a meaningful and enjoyable learning experience. It’s an obvious fit. Teaching children gardening is a great way to teach them about responsibility, plant life cycle, self-reliance, and environmental awareness. For the most part, kids enjoy being outside and participating in activities such as digging in the dirt, making things, and seeing how plants grow.

 

Benefits of Gardening for Kids

Planting and caring for a garden introduces kids to many scientific ideas. The wonder of watching a garden flourish may prompt questions like: Why do plants need sunlight? or “How do worms help plants?”  Eventually, you’ll be discussing soil structure and photosynthesis.

After harvesting your produce, consider all the brain-boosting vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals your kids will be consuming. Vegetables like garlic, spinach, and beets have been shown to improve cognitive function and help children grow and develop. It’s important to teach kids to continually taste and try new items to develop their taste buds to enjoy the garden’s richness.

Children who garden will undoubtedly benefit from the fruits and vegetables they grow. But gardening itself can promote good health. These days, all kids could use a bit extra exercise and sunshine, as gardening provides. Sporting activities like moving soil, digging in the dirt, and pulling a wheelbarrow can help build gross motor skills and overall strength. These heavy works also help kids stay relaxed and composed.

gardening fosters teamwork and communication skills. It gives kids a sense of meaning and responsibility. Taking care of the plants promotes mindfulness. gardening principles like composting leftover food for fertilizer or collecting rainwater may teach kids deep regard and concern for our planet.

 

How to Start

The location is crucial when starting a garden with your kids.  Traditionally, the garden should be located in a sunny area. It is also critical to analyze the soil quality and apply nutrients to maximize development potential. Six to ten inches of soil should be plowed under before planting. Adding organic matter to the soil can help it grow stronger.

Making a garden plan can also help maximize the garden’s potential. The garden’s north end should have the tallest plants, while the sides should have the more permanent ones.

Plants can also be grown in pots if you don’t have much space. Containers constructed of plastic or clay must have proper drainage to prevent root rot. Using readymade potting soil and watering often is essential for plants growing in pots.

To get a child interested in gardening, reserve a small piece of the garden for them. A 3×3 area is a good start. The child can choose what to grow and can experiment without affecting the rest of the garden.

To protect the safety of the young gardener, child-friendly garden tools should be provided. There are child-sized spades, rakes, cultivators, and hoes.  Making the garden an adventure for kids is another fantastic method to get them gardening. Since a kid-friendly garden should be fun, keep your instructions light, engaging, and simple.

 

What to Grow

Spring is the finest time of year to start seeds, so getting outside and getting a little filthy is essential! As long as the seeds have time to mature before fall frost, they can be sown in the garden at any time.

These few plants are easy to grow and delightful to eat, with brief growth seasons.

 

Sunflower

This is essential for a kid’s garden. Plant only one or two, as they are large. Succeeding weeks will produce little seedlings that will grow to 2′ tall in a month. Flowers bloom in eight weeks, displaying clusters of seed kernels. Natural drying of seeds will occur in the late summer sun, providing a source of protein and iron for a healthy snack. Keep a few for next summer’s garden.

 

Radishes

Radishes are easy to grow, germinate in 3-10 days and mature in 20-30 days. Plant them 4-6′′ apart. Choose between a mild or hot radish before planting.

 

Nasturtiums

These blooms are easy to grow and produce quickly, inspiring young gardeners. Nasturtium blossoms 50 days later with orange, yellow, and red blooms. They thrive in sunny, dry areas with poor soil.

 

Carrots

In cooler weather, carrot seeds can be planted directly into the soil. Wait patiently for them to germinate. Carrots need 60 days to mature. The ground should be free of stones and easy to ‘down’ for the carrot. Keep them watered and thin to 3′′ apart to avoid overgrowth but no root.

 

Cherry Tomatoes

These will be your kid’s favorite crop. Plant in direct sunlight and use seedlings instead of seeds. Stakes need to be connected loosely to seedlings as they grow taller. Add a lot of organic matter. Water the soil to keep the leaves dry. The growing season lasts between 50 and 75 days.

 

Pumpkin

Pumpkins are essential for a child’s garden if you have the space. Make a little hill and plant three seeds in each hole. After a week of sprouting, vine leaves grow and crawl along the ground. Pumpkins require 80–120 days to mature and are ready when the outside is hard, and the inside is hollow.

 

Other Plants

Some other plant species would be fantastic to grow with your kids. Such as-

  • Rainbow Swiss Chard
  • Snow Peas
  • Beets
  • Zucchini
  • Bush beans
  • Potatoes
  • Corn
  • Lettuce
  • Watermelon
  • Strawberries
  • Calendula
  • Morning Glories
  • Pansies
  • Basil
  • Green onion
  • Chive

Kids and adults will enjoy watching these plants sprout and grow rapidly.  Monitor plant growth under various lighting and watering conditions.

 

Garden Projects for Kids

gardening with kids makes the garden an artistic environment. Kids adore color, and gardens are no exception.

Rainbow gardens are a pleasant theme for kids. Rainbow plants (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet, and indigo) are fun to plant and learn.

A pizza garden is a fun and engaging themed garden project for kids. Arrange the plants in a circle, with each wedge representing a pizza element. Plant tomatoes, peppers, onions, garlic, and colorful symbols like marigolds in each wedge. When the crops are ready, they can be utilized to build a pizza as a nice reward for the child’s efforts.

Moon garden is another unique and fun theme. It is a corner of your garden that flowers at night, is aromatic, and has a grey or silver hue. The goal is to appreciate a beautiful garden by moonlight. A garden like this may appeal to our senses of sight, touch, smell, and even taste with a little forethought!

 

Child Safety in the Garden

Make the garden kid-friendly by using the following tips:

  • Pick the right tool size for your child.
  • Whenever feasible, grow organic.
  • Carefully store sprays and fertilizers.
  • Use umbrellas or shade cover in the summer
  • Safely store heavy tools and equipment.
  • Never leave filled water bucket unattended around young children.
  • Ensure your kids wear sunscreen, hats, proper clothing, and gumboots if needed.

 

Wrapping Up

Working in the earth and soil creates a lot of mess, which is something that children enjoy. Whether it’s making mud pies or mixing their own fertilizer, digging or looking for insects and seeds, building a wormery, or growing flowers and veggies, your children will be able to find something to keep them occupied and thrilled throughout their time gardening. All you and your kids need to get going with the digging is a shovel or spade and some good old fertile soil.

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