There is no better place to grow wonderful memories than in your garden. Kids of all ages can be involved in garden planting with just the smallest amount of encouragement and planning on your part. Gardening offers many benefits including exercise, fresh air, and stress relief. The benefits of gardening for kids are even higher, as little ones learn patience, responsibility, and creativity amidst the blooms and vines.
Getting Kids Excited About Garden Planting
Before you plan your garden, plant the seeds in your child’s imagination with books and stories. Introduce your kid to age appropriate books that focus on magical gardens, the process of gardening, specific plants, the positive impact gardening can have on a family, community, or environment. Books and stories will awaken a curiosity about the process in your child before you get started.
“And the secret garden bloomed and bloomed and every morning revealed new miracles.”
– The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett.
Gift your budding gardener with kid-sized gardening tools such as brightly coloured gloves, wellies, garden markers, and a watering can. Dressing the part makes gardening even more of a fun occasion.
Getting kids interested in gardening can be messy fun! Encourage digging in the earth, looking for worms, even splashing through the mud to appeal to your young gardener.
Incorporate play time as well as planting time in your garden. Paint rock monsters, make fairy villages, hunt for gnomes, or take toy tractors and trucks out to get muddy. Designate the garden as a fun zone, and kids will want to spend more time there.
Garden Planting and Care for Kids
When your kids plant their first garden, it should be simple and manageable. If you are sharing space within a larger family garden, an area no bigger than 2 by 3 metres is a good start. Container gardening is great for kids, and an easy solution if you are lacking the room for a more sizable garden area.
If you have younger kids, prep the soil for them. Loosen the soil, check the water drainage, and test the pH levels. Older kids can be a part of this process with you. If you are using a container, fill it with a potting mix.
Let your young gardener choose a few varieties of plants or vegetables to begin. To help them succeed, choose hardy blooms like Geranium Rozanne. Rozanne does well in or out of containers, and is very easy going. Your young gardener can place her anywhere in the garden, and pair her with other blooms or even quick growing vegetables.
Let children plant their seeds and plants themselves, and give them maintenance tasks appropriate for their age and skill level.
Remember that your idea of gardening success may be completely different than your small gardener’s. Relax your standards, and embrace the imperfection: crooked rows, weeds and all.