Gardening With Kids

Gardening has always been one of my favorite things to do with the kids. I don’t have a green thumb at all. I’ve killed more plants that I have grown 🙂 but gardening with kids is a completely different thing.

gardening with kids

Photo Credit: Taliesin

There are so many benefits to kids gardening that I look forward to Spring when we get our seeds ready and do our planting.

Important Things To Remember When Gardening With Kids

Keep it as simple as possible. You want them to learn the basics of gardening, about how plants grow and all that, but you don’t necessarily want them to become the next gardening whiz on tv. For this reason, grow plants/crops that are easy to grow. You can start with cherry tomatoes, carrots, runner beans and the like. A herb garden is also very easy to do. They don’t need a lot of attention and you can use them too!

Intervene if necessary. As much as you want them to learn about caring for plants and that sense of responsibility of growing something, they will not fully comprehend what it really takes to have a garden. You may sometimes have to give them some more water or get the pests off sometimes.

Have fun – One of the things that kids really love about gardening is the time they spend time with you as well.. Have fun with them. Don’t be so obsessive-compulsive about it..

A Sense Of Ownership

Kids not only love planting and seeing their plants grow. They enjoy picking them even more. Use whatever vegetable they have picked in your food for that day.

A Garden chair
Buy the kids a garden chair or anything to sit on near their garden patch. They’ll try to watch that plant grow, I kid you not.

Garden Tools For Kids
There are cheap garden tools for kids, but I recommend buying a real one. They don’t easily break and it can grow with them too. If it is within your budget, get them other gardening stuff that you use yourself such as a spray bottle, garden tote, gloves and apron.

Some Things You Can Teach Your Kids When Gardening

As I said, I love gardening because it’s a good way to teach kids about a lot of things. It’s also something that many kids love to do.

Here are some life lessons to teach your kids when gardening:

  • Teaching kids about water
  • the cycle of life (or photosynthesis!)
  • How earthworms, plants and that ladybug all play a symbiotic relationship in the garden
  • Why you have to get rid of those pesky bugs that keep eating the plants – a bit tricky to explain as the little ones will soon start asking why you’re killing it when killing’s bad… Get back to me when you find the answer to that one! :-)
  • What the bees and butterflies are doing in the garden
  • The relationship we have with plants and why we need them to survive (and not just because we eat them)
  • the bad things mankind is doing to endanger the plants and trees in the planet

Have Fun In The Garden Even When You’re Not Gardening

A breakfast in the garden? Why not? Kids love these things and when they’ve got their own garden patch in there as well, they’ll love it too.

Here are other activities you can do in the garden with kids:

  • Pick some flowers and dry them between books.
  • When the flowers are dry, make a card with the flowers for decoration.
  • Make daisy necklaces
  • Make a birdfeeder
  • Get the tent out and go backyard camping
  • Make a butterfly garden
  • Make your own bug spray using by blending water, onion, garlic and dishwashing liquid
  • Make a compost pit. You can buy the best worms online. Did you know that? Kids would love these worms when they arrive. Ok, maybe not all kids.
  • Collect stones and paint them. Decorate the garden with it
  • Get your ipod and speakers and listen to music together.
  • See insects up close and personal with a creature peeper or a magnifying glass
  • Water painting
  • Spray each other with water. Takes a lot from you but your child will sure have loads of fun.
  • Make a time capsule and bury it in the garden
  • Invite some friends over and have a garden party
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