Gardening With Children
A garden is a wonderful playground for children of all ages. There’s so much to look at like different leaf-shapes, stuff to mess around with like squidgy soil and lots to learn, like how big plants grow from tiny seeds. children who are involved with gardening from an early age, and it is surely gratifying to watch their interest and self-esteem grow as their gardening efforts yielded good results.
Here are a few easy plants you can grow with your child in your garden.
A must for a child’s garden, plant just one or two, since they take a lot of room. Sunflowers will sprout in one week, become a small seedling in two weeks, and should be 2′ tall in a month. In eight weeks, the buds will flower revealing hundreds of seed kernels
Radishes bring quick results for the young gardener, germinating in 3-10 days, and with a very short growing season of 20-30 days. They can be planted closely, 4-6″ apart. Plant in cool weather for a mild radish, or hot weather for a hotter radish.
Carrot seeds can be sown directly into soil and prefer cooler temperatures. They can be slow to germinate, so be patient. Carrots will mature in about 60 days. The soil should be free of rocks and easy for the carrot to grow ‘down’. Keep well-watered and thin to every 3″ because crowding will produce foliage but no root.
A ‘never-fail’ crop, you can plant red or white potato varieties with equal success, though red will mature faster. Children seem to favour this variety. Cut seed potatoes into chunks with at least two ‘eyes’ per chunk. Plant in furrows, about 12-15″ apart, with eyes pointing upward. Mound soil up around plant as it grows; harvest when plant collapses.
A ‘must’ for a child’s garden, pumpkins are worth the extra space they take if you have the room. Plant seeds in a small hill; poke three holes in the hill and put one seed in each hole. Seeds will sprout in about one week; after a few days, vine leaves begin to form and creep along the ground.
Once there are three pumpkins on the vine, pick off any new blossoms. Pumpkins take 80 – 120 days
Whether you are an accomplished gardener or a novice, gardening with children is your chance to
partner with Mother Nature to make magic. Don’t worry about achieving horticultural perfection.
Just dig in and grow something beautiful or good to eat. Your garden is your treasure chest; you and
your young gardener exploring together can discover its priceless bounty for an afternoon’s delight
or for a lifetime.