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Kids In The Garden

Kids in the garden
Gardening is a good way to relieve stress, and as anyone who has spent a reasonable time over their flower beds will tell you, it’s very good exercise too.  Not only that but in today’s hectic lifestyle, it is also a great way to commune with nature and get out in the fresh air.  We know all the benefits, and now should be encouraging our children to take advantage of them in the same way we do.  There are a variety of schemes in schools and so on now to encourage kids into the garden, and this can be carried over at home to give them a better idea of where their food comes from, and get them to begin to value the environment in a very real way.  You can also hope it will give them the responsibility
An easy way to get your children started is to give them a large garden pot of their very own to plant in and take care of.  They will find having their own plot more exciting, and will take much more interest than they would in your patch of the garden! Do monitor the project – of course you will need to avoid garden hazards and supervise the use of certain tools, but also offer them help and encouragement to ensure they get things growing.  Give them their own easy grow seeds, a watering can and gloves, and explain how it works as you help.  You can also try seed trays which can be used very easily and will give the kids the joy of watching a new plant spring in to life up close.
Another good place to start is by growing herbs, which can be very hardy and require little maintenance.  They will stand a certain amount of neglect, but still teach the kids about the responsibility of having to water them and tend them regularly.  You could try growing a ‘pizza herb garden’ growing varieties which the kids can taste on pizzas and in pasta, showing them the link from garden to table.  They will enjoy the connection as much as the taste, and the sense of self satisfaction at providing a part of the family meal can be great in helping build up confidence.
Be ready to remind the child to water the plants daily as well as to till the soil regularly to encourage root growth.  Although they will learn from seeing the plants wither, it makes sense to keep this a positive experience, so plenty of enthusiasm and encouragement is vital.  It will be fun watching them begin to take an active interest in the garden and give you time to bond at the same time as making your garden grow…
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