Children of all ages tend to be amazed by the magic that is mother nature. We have the
pleasure of nurturing so many unique, beautiful, and beneficial plants. Reaping the rewards of
our hard work and a fruitful harvest just cannot be beat. Showing children the intricacies of
gardening including each plant’s individuality, what makes great soil, and what contributes to the
health of their plant will stick with them for a lifetime.
Knowing Where To Start
There are just so many plants out there to choose for your garden. However, not every flower,
shrub, or fruit-bearing plant works well under any climate. Do some research on the types of
plants that work well for your desired effect. If growing a steady harvest is your goal steer more
towards plants like tomatoes, beans & peas, leafy greens, and herbs. These types of plants can
easily be grown indoors, outdoors, and in pots without much hassle.
Getting Creative With It
Gardening not only takes time and dedication, but also takes a level of creativity. If you are
planning on starting a garden from scratch, think about how you might want to construct the
garden given the space you have to work with. Constructing a large and intricate garden isn’t
always necessary. Make use of old reusable items and recyclable items. This is not only
cheaper, but will deepen the adventure for you and your child.
If you’re thinking about starting your own garden, but an entire garden sounds daunting, try
something a little simpler. Some old cans (lined with plastic and ventilated for water flow),
reusable plastic containers (like soda, milk, or water bottles), retired galoshes, or even
something really creative such as a rain gutter garden. There are so many items out there that
would otherwise be thrown away, but make a wonderful start for your garden. Try reusing larger
non-biodegradable items like old tires, worn out dresser drawers, or wooden pallets can be used
as a trellis.
This is a wonderful time to explore the need for biodegradable materials that should be used in
the creation of your garden. Sprinkling in some egg shells, coffee grounds, or other garden
trimmings could be a prosperous start to your tiny seedlings. This way, the child learns that all fit
plants start with the soil.
Unbeatable Learning Experience About Nature
Mother Nature can get a bit dirty and slimy. It’s important for kids to understand everything that
goes into helping a plant become its biggest and strongest – it’s not always easy. This is a great
time to teach a child about why some plants might die. A new plant can always be planted in its
place, but taking care of the plant you have raised is extremely rewarding. For example, insects
and animals sometimes love to munch on yummy fruits and veggies or even the plants
themselves. Knowing what to look out for, whether it be mold from over watering (or other
factors in the soil), insect infestation, or animal intruders, will prepare any young gardener for
the best and the worst.
Taking a first-hand look at everything it takes to keep a garden healthy can be quite enlightening
for a child. They can learn that it isn’t just water and sunshine that keeps things alive. There is
actually an entire eco-system at play in any garden at anytime. When a child understands this,
then they can see that even the smallest of creatures has a part to play in the proper growth of
Grasping The Sense Of Responsibility
Once the groundwork has been set and the plants are growing, the next step is regular
maintenance. Aside from any possible pests that may stand in the way, any budding gardener
should know that growing plants (especially from seeds) takes commitment. Weeding, watering,
and regular pruning should all be a part of the process for any blooming garden.
Getting up close and personal with their plant is what will help them see exactly what their plant
wants and needs. They will be filled with a sense of responsibility and care when they start to
grasp the fact that a plant’s life is determined by their dependable attention.
Starting a garden with your children might seem like an intimidating task at first, but just
remember to start simple and have fun. It may get a little bit dirty, but the incredible amount of
learning available to a child simply by gardening is immense. Your gardening experience can
only be limited by the magnitude of your creativity and honest love for nature.
Written by Trisha Miller of thatdangvegan