Gardening with Kids

It is never too early to expose your little ones to gardening. It is a great way to teach kids about nature, science and responsibility. It gets them involved as they pull weeds, plant seeds, water, and maintain the gardens.

~ Here are some ideas to help foster interest in your little gardeners and get their tiny thumbs to go green! ~

1. Start Small

If your kids are new to gardening, have them start off by growing a few seeds in a pot for them to tend to. Place the pot where your kids will see it multiple times a day, and will be able to observe all the small changes of the plant as it grows. Once your kids see the incredible phenomenon of a seed grow, they will be more eager to put in the efforts of tending to a garden.

4. Help them Build It

Half of the fun is building their own garden area, so help them with the preparation of the soil. Then take the opportunity to teach them about composting and recycling. Why settle for old traditional, boring pots – get creative. Engage their senses, captivate their imaginations! Do a little research on creative garden spaces. You can plant in an old tyre or old cups, to show them whimsical ways of gardening. Old tins are also perfect for planting their seeds and make a pretty display. 

2. Give them a Job

Give kids each a specific job in the garden. Pick one that won’t affect the garden too much if they make a few mistakes and that they can do without too much of your help. It could include pulling weeds, putting soil into flower pots or shredding newspaper for compost. These small tasks help them get their ‘feet wet’ and gain the necessary knowledge for gardening while they are about it.

5. Let them Take Responsibility

Encourage your kids to take responsibility for watering and tending theirlittle gardens in a way that is age appropriate. Show your children that
gardening isn’t a chore. Kids tend to run away from household chores! Sing and play games while planting and tending. Be creative with the daily reminders to water their green buddies. Help them to understand that just how water is a need for them, in the same way their new plant buddies also need constant care.

3. Give them Ownership

Once your kids have some experience with gardening, give them a plot or some containers of their own in which to make their own little gardens. This will let them take ownership and learn every step of the gardening process as well as some life lessons along the way! Help them to choose appropriate plants for the space or container they are going to use. A visit to the nursery can be very educational and lots of fun!

6. Harvesting

When it comes to harvesting, let your kids pick their herbs or flowers and enjoy adding them to a meal or putting them in a little vase. Praise and encourage them for their results, or encourge them to try again if their gardens weren’t too successful first time around.

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