Summer is a great time to start a garden with children. With some free time before school starts, children can get a good harvest going before the fall and winter seasons. While temperatures are conflicting around the world, you can still find the right type of plants to grow in the summer and be ready for a hearty harvest in a couple of months.
My love for gardening and nature developed at a very young age. I thank both my parents for that because now I teach gardening to children at an elementary school and hope to instill in them a love of nature too. Whether you’re a beginner or an avid gardener, getting kids started at a young age gives them a chance to learn and grow at their own pace. Nature has no judgement and will in fact, bring you an abundance of joy and satisfaction for many, many years.
To get kids started in gardening, you must know the basics. The fundamentals of gardening helps develop good habits that leads to better understanding and less frustration. If you and your children already have a garden full of lovely plants, then that’s awesome. If not, or you’re just starting out, check out some easy tips to get you started on a lifetime of healthy living.
10 BASIC GARDENING TIPS:
1 – Decide on your garden space. Do you want a small patch of land in your yard? Do you want only planters?Or do you want a mixture of ground and raised? Once you decide on the type of garden you want, you can start planning!
2 – Decide on how much you want to invest in your garden. If you’re just starting out, it’s easier to start on a small budget. Any range between $50-$100 is a good starting point.
3 – Have your kids research on the type of plants they want to grow. Depending on their age, they can start with very basic and easy to take care of plants. I will list the type of plants below.
4 – Visit a garden center or big box stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s that has a garden center. Take some time to walk around and learn about the various types of plants. Touch the plants and smell them to see what you like.
5 – While at the garden center, pick up some easy to grow plants: mint (any type), tomatoes, cucumbers, cabbage, radish, sweet snap peas, bell peppers, daisies, sunflowers, and hibiscus (seasonal).
6 – Have your kids pick out basic garden tools: small hand shovel/spade, small hand rake, gloves, bucket, watering can, and gardening soil. Many gardening tools are made for children but I recommend getting them medium sized tools so they can eventually grow into them.
7 – Find the right spot in the garden. Most plants can take full sun up to 6 hours, depending on where you live. For easy to grow plants such as the ones mentioned above, try to grow them where there’s sun for most part of the day. If you plant in planters, they are easy to move around according to the position of the sun.
8 – Don’t over or under water your plants. How do you know if you’re over watering or under watering? Check the top soil. Place 2 fingers into the soil of where you plant is. If it’s moist, then you don’t need to water the plants yet. If it’s dry or not moist, then water them immediately. Over watering plants can kill them or cause plant diseases. Under watering plants can make it difficult for them to flourish again.
9 – Buy high quality planting soil. Once you’ve decided if you’re planting directly in ground or in planters, make sure you buy higher quality soil to give your new plants a chance to grow and flourish.
10 – Tag and monitor your plants. If you’re growing from seeds, it’s very simple to watch your seeds grow from seedlings to full plants. If planting seedlings that you got from the store, place markers in the soil with the name of the plant and the date it was planted.
A few other things to note as your child starts his/her journey into becoming a gardener. Besides doing the basics of gardening, invest in composting and upcycling. Being a gardener or just having a love for gardening is also being a steward of the planet. We garden because we appreciate nature and the love of living a healthy lifestyle. Gardening is therapeutic and resourceful. You can plant a bounty of delicious and healthy food to last you for many years or you can grow a garden just for show. All it takes are some simple steps to begin your garden and your kids will grow into a love for nature and making healthy choices.
*photo courtesy of Martha Stewart magazine
Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.
Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.