Fresh air, running around in the soil and getting filthy is the best way to help your kids learn, exercise and grow. Playing in dirt, planting seeds and exploring the natural world.
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To garden with your kids, get you started here is some super simple ideas to get out with the kids now-
• Give them their own space. I wouldn’t recommend letting you kids loose in the flower border, yet, but giving them a pot or small area that’s just for them if a fab idea.
• Let them explore. Give them opportunities to explore the world around them from the soil to the skies. Investigate the mini life in the soil with a magnifying glass, search out bugs and wildlife and how they can help.
• Let them decide what they want to grow. Take time to research and learn what those plants need to grow and flourish. Talk about plant life cycles and how plants affect the world around them.
How Gardening With Kids Can Help Their Development?
Gardening with your kids is a fabulous way to help your kids development from all angles.
• Gardening is full of opportunities to develop gross motor skills, like raking the soil or leaves, digging, lifting a spade full of soil, carrying watering cans.
- Mentally helping them develop counting, colours, shapes, life cycles and so many more lessons.
- Fine motor skills are develop through activities like, sowing seeds,
- Sensory stimulation comes from the sight of colours and variety of plants, the smell of flowers, tasting the vegetables and fruits you grow, hearing the birds and wildlife around you and obviously touching the soil and plants around you.
- Fresh air and moving around outdoors also help with health. Soaking in vitamin D is important for growth too.
What Can We Plant In A Kids Garden?
Here’s our list of the easiest plants to grow with kids in your garden.
• Sunflower. A must for a child’s garden, plant just one or two, since they take a lot of room.
• Sweet peas smell incredible, grow fast and peovide so many options for activities and attracting wildlife
• Nasturtiums. These can be eaten with their peppery taste. Fast growing and provide loads of colour.
• Borlotti Beans. Large beans that are easy to handle. Tall growing and produce lots of beans to eat fresh or store for the winter.
• Carrots. Sweet crunchy carrots come in a range of colours these days.
• Lettuce leaves. Always a good plant to geow to eat with any meal.
• Radishes. Peppery and spicy and incredibly juicy. Fast to grow and harvest.
• Snow Peas. There’s nothing sweeter that fresh peas straight out of the pod.
• Blueberries. Can be geown in a pot and provide a season of blue berries.
• Cherry Tomatoes. Super compact and easy to grow providing lots of small juicy tomatoes in a variety of colours.
All super easy and straight forward to grow.
How Do I Get my kids excited about gardening?
6 Ways to get excited about being in the garden
Buy Kid-Friendly Tools.
The right sized tools are a must for any budding gardener.
Trying to struggle on with the wrong sized tools will lead to your little one getting fed up and wandering off.
Paint some plant labels, pots and step stones. Make wind chimes or even a sun catcher. Anything to make their space feel more like theirs.
Give kids their own space to grow. Let them make the decisions and choose the plants they will have a bigger connection and be more interested in what happens to it.
Connect with nature.
Try a bug hunt, scavenger hunt or woodland bingo. Get down low and search out those bugs. Connect with nature make kids feel connected to the world around them.
Give small chores to kids.
Kids love to help, so giving them tasks that they can help with makes them feel included and useful things like sprinkling seeds, raking leaves, adding to the compost pile, watering and weeding are all great tasks.
Try feeding the birds, planting seedlings, and weeding around plants too.
Kids love anything that involves water, water the plants, paint on the path with water on a sunny day, or make a rain gauge.
Why is gardening is so important for kids?
There’s a ton of reasons why gardening is so important.
The most obvious reason why teaching our kids to garden is important is so they can feed themselves.
Other reasons why making time to garden with your kids is super important!
• It gives children a chance to develop their senses.
• Develop fine motor skills
• Enhance Gross motor skills
• Spend Quality Time with your family.
• Teach how to care for their environment
• It helps kids make good eating choices
Garden with your kids – How to get Started
The best way to get started is to work out what space you want to grow in. It could be a pot, basket, plot or bathtub.
- This post will help you find space
- Here’s a post that will help you garden if your own a budget. Gardening doesn’t have to be expensive.
- And this one helps with finding time to get out in the garden with a busy family.
Once you know what space you have then use our planning sheets to plan out the area your going to plant.
How To Start A Garden With Your Kids
The space you’ll need depends on the type of plant you want to grow.
Check out seed packets which will tell you how big the plants are that you want to grow and what space and conditions they need.
What to Plant?
If healthy eating is your main goal then start with sweet vegetables and easy to grow fruits like strawberries, peas and tomatoes.
In the beginning, we didn’t know what we were doing, but a friend gave us a strawberry plant to grow.
The kids weren’t impressed but did care for it. Once it began to fruit however, wow were they all over it. It became a competition each morning to see who got the ripe strawberries.
We also tried growing carrot tops and pea shoots on the windowsill.
This was a huge success! We started to really look into other vegetables we could grow from our left over kitchen scraps.
Tomatoes seeds, garlic, celery, lettuce, and cabbage all sprout easily from left overs.
My eldest even planted an apple seed 10 years ago and it’s almost ready to fruit.
There’s no perfect plants. Find what YOU and your kids like to eat and grow that.
The worst that can happen is everything dies and you have to start again (that wasn’t supposed to sound quite so dramatic)
But if those tiny seeds are successful the results can be amazing with a little care and knowledge.
Where To Plant When Gardening with your kids
Wherever you live, you will have room to try gardening with your kids.
Your garden could be a windowsill, a few pots on the patio or a few patches in your front garden in between shrubs.
There is even a fleet of gorilla gardeners out there turning unused and unloved spaces into bountiful places.
If this piques your interest, check out this from GorillaGardening.Org
You could try making seed bombs and bury them around unloved areas that you can return to later. Herbs, lettuce, chard and spinach are all great choices.
If you’d rather not take the chance of eating anything from a roundabout or waste land you can always fill your seed bomb full of wildflowers perfect for bees and wildlife to benefit from.
Let’s Get Gardening With Your kids
Getting kids involved in gardening doesn’t have to be difficult.
A few well times activities and crafts to grab their attention and a few bits of equipment is all you need.
Here is a full calendar of spring garden based activities to help get you started
Another way to encourage kids outdoors is to introduce different play equipment.
We added a playhouse the kids could play in and we build a small raised bed next to it.
To add some variety and safe plants we added some small herb plants for some sensory play and the kids sow and grow various plants they ways.
Last year they wanted poppies and annual flowers and spent the summer picking flowers to dry them and make pictures and presents for friends and family.
The also use their plants to make decoration for their mud pies and pretend salads.
They ended up getting things rather sticky in the playhouse so we added a fantastic mud kitchen.
The kids love it, we use ours for water play, water beads, sand, mud and planting fun as well as cooking up a storm using pretend food or pebbles and foliage.
There’s so many ways to get kids outdoors and they don’t need to take all day, just 5 to 10 minutes at a time is enough to but up a love of the outdoors.
You could also;
• Plant annual flowers and wildflowers to attract honey bees.
• Plant Tomatoes, Strawberries, squash in pots
• Take some spring flowers and press them to make a craft with later.
• Grow easy vegetables like courgette. It’s super easy to grow.
• Start a gardening journal.
• If they ask a question, make a point of finding the answer, either in a book, online or hey ask us!! Record your answer in your journal.
• Make an enchanted fairy or dinosaur garden (using toys, succulents & decorative trinkets in a pot or bring nature indoors and try a terrarium.
• Learn how plants work together and can help each other by companion planting things like tomato and marigolds.
Remember to download our Free Spring Garden activities For Kids Ebook above.
Let us know what your favourite Spring activity is for your garden.