With spring in full-swing, now’s the perfect time to get your kids involved with gardening! Whether you’re just starting out or adding more to a big luscious garden, letting your kids help out is an awesome way to teach them about the ecosystem, boost their confidence, and get them off the screen and outside! Check out our list of tips to make gardening with kids as successful as possible.
Make it a Learning Experience
Letting your kids help you garden is a great way to start teaching them lessons about growing their own flowers, veggies, and herbs!
Show your child how to measure seed depth with their trowel, or teach them how to trim the tops of herbs to make them bushy.
Show them how to properly water plants and how to test the soil for its moisture content. You’ll have some expert gardeners on your hands in no time!
Don’t Fear the Mess
Any time your littles are out digging around in the dirt, they’re bound to make a bit of a mess - it’s inevitable. But as hard as it may be, try not to sweat it!
Making a mess is all part of the fun. Messes can always be cleaned up, but awesome memories can’t be replaced.
If you’re extra worried about getting their hands dirty, pick up a pair of kids gardening gloves. And to keep that mud from trekking through the house, try setting up a hose station so your littles can clean off their shoes off before they go inside.
Get Them Their Own Tools
Nothing will make your little gardeners feel more official than a set of their very own gardening tools. Not to mention appropriately-sized tools will help make it easier for them to pitch in.
Keep Sunscreen at the Ready
The harsh sun rays can really beat down on you when you’re outside gardening. Don’t forget to keep your littles protected from the sun with a thick layer of sunscreen.
Pro-Tip: If your child has a part in their hair, remember to apply sunscreen there too! When they’re gardening, chances are the sun will directly hit the top of their head. For added protection, have them wear their very own garden hat.
Grow Some Plants You Can Eat
Kids are much more likely to try foods they played a part in making. Try planting some fruits & veggies to get them more excited about trying new things.
Planting food is also a great opportunity for a lesson on where food comes from. Make it a teachable moment by telling your kids about how crops start out on farms and then eventually make their way to the grocery stores.
Be Ready to Lend a Hand (Sometimes in Secret)
Growing their own plants is a great way to teach your kids to take ownership of their work. And it’s always good to stay nearby in case they need a little help. But in some cases, they don’t have to know everything you’re doing to assist them.
You may have to go out on your own to trim a few plants or give them an extra watering. But as long as your little gardener stays actively involved in the growing process, it can be better they don’t know how much you’ve helped so they can feel the pride of growing something on their own.
Grow Exciting Plants
This will come as no surprise, but kids aren’t the most patient. For that reason it can be a good idea to choose plants that grow relatively quickly - so they can see progress early on and not lose interest.
Kids are also naturally tactile. Try getting plants with different textures and feels. Adding lots of brightly-colored plants can make gardening more exciting too.
Check out this article from The Spruce for some ideas on plants to grow with your kids.
Have any good gardening tips of your own? Share them in the comments!