Ways to Involve Kids in Gardening

April 14 is National Gardening Day
April 14 is National Gardening Day and we know avid gardeners always love reasons to garden! But this year, why not bring the kids into it? It’s really never a bad time to introduce age-appropriate children to this lovely and rewarding past-time.

Get Whimsical

A lot of our best ideas come to us suddenly, out of the blue-especially with creative endeavors such as gardening. We see something in an antique store that jogs our mind into picturing how we can use it in our gardens. Plethoras of items at our fingertips. A sandbox easily becomes a beautiful and easily accessible garden plot for flowers or vegetables-just be sure to add drainage holes in the bottom. An old barrel quickly turns into a neat water-plant pond garden. You can even add goldfish for more enjoyment with the kids.

A Customized Paradise Grows with a Theme
A trip to Joe’s Market Basket will get you all you need to start a fairy or dinosaur garden sure to impress the grandkids! Visit us for containers to house your themed garden, along with nutritional soil, some small scale plants such as succulents, or small landscaping rocks or pebbles. You can purchase extremely cheap miniature figures at your local bargain store or discover figures the kids left abandoned in the basement from long ago.

Voila! Instant fun for the kiddos while you teach them the basics of planting and reusing, recycling. Other themed ideas are gardens designed strictly to attract birds or pollinators or the super cool idea of birth gardens- only planting the flowers of your loved ones' birth months.

If They Can Eat It, They Will Come
Another fun idea is choosing to make a garden full of things you can eat. Or in some cases, such as with kitchen scrap gardening, with foods you’ve already eaten! Using vegetable and fruit scraps like oranges, lemons, limes, sweet potatoes, avocados, carrots, beets, onions, and ginger, you can propagate new plants. This is great to teach the kids about plant science and life cycles.

Three Sisters gardens are a nice choice for siblings beginning to garden together. This Native American tradition includes corn, beans, and squash (all planted in the same row together). This trio of plants has a symbiotic relationship and showcases how we all help one another.

The bean tendrils will climb the corn, and the corn will grow stronger from the beans’ nitrogen. Both will flourish from the squash’s leaves, which provide shade and weed protection. Other options are snack gardens of most requested veggies or pizza wheel gardens (round gardens with set “slices” holding various herbs and vegetables for homemade pizza). You can even alternate the “slices” with flowers or other fun things. Put smaller seeds into a dish for tiny hands to study and remove easier then have the kiddos draw the plants on paper, laminate, glue to a stick and you have cute plant labels for your new garden.

Gardening helps kids socially, emotionally, and physically all while providing an organic experience to bond with children. Our five Joe’s Market Basket locations have all the tools you need to begin your journey gardening with your favorite youngsters.

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