Spring has arrived and it’s time to get to work on those gardens! Before you do all the work yourself, consider getting the kids involved. There are many lessons to be learned with a shovel and some dirt!
- Gardening is a great way for kids to spend time outside, learn basic plant science, and have fun.
- You can’t plant garden without digging in dirt, pouring water, and watching things appear – what kid wouldn’t be into that?
- Caring for a garden will teach kids patience – you need to wait for flowers to bloom or veggies to be ready for harvest.
Here are a few tips that will make planting a garden with your kids the best possible experience:
Buy Kid-Sized Tools
If you’re going to involve your kids in gardening, they need the proper tools. Look for gardening gloves, trowels, and watering cans that are made for small hands!
Make a Kid Zone
If you have a large garden, designate one area for the kids. Or, if you’re planting in pots, give each child their own planter. Having a garden of their own to care for can help kids develop a sense of pride and responsibility.
Vegetable gardens are perfect for kids! Children will love the hands-on experience of growing their own food. It’s a great way to encourage kids to eat healthy too. Kids will be more excited to eat their very own vegetables. Homegrown veggies also taste much better than the ones in the grocery store! Carrots, lettuce, tomatoes, and green beans are all good choices for kids. Your kids can also grow their own pumpkins for next Halloween!
Plant “Fun” Flowers
If your child wants to grow flowers, choose ones that are kid-friendly. Sunflowers are a great choice because they grow quickly and kids will be amazed by a flower that is taller than they are! Snapdragons are fun because if you pinch either side of the flower, you can make the ‘dragon’ open his ‘mouth’.
Add Some Creativity
Instead of using the seed packets to mark the rows in your garden, have your kids draw pictures of the things they planted and make their own row markers. Or, even better, paint marker stones with acrylic paint and coat with an outdoor sealer like Mod-Podge.
Know That it’s Okay to Get Dirty
A big part of the appeal of gardening for kids is being able to play in the dirt. Don’t let it bother you. Clothes and kids are both washable. Getting dirty is part of the fun!
For more tips and ideas on gardening with kids, check out the National Gardening Association’s site on kids gardening!