Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Gardening with Kids

I'm doing a post on 'Gardening with Kids', but the reality is that I'm not the gardener.  Meet my husband, Shawn. He's the family gardener.  Despite having grown up on a farm, he's had to learn through trial and error about gardening…especially when it comes to creative ways of getting our kids involved.

He shared some of his thoughts with me.

Shawn's first idea is a doozie:  The first year isn't about yielding fruits/veggies, its about showing your kids where food comes from.  We've used our garden as an opportunity to discuss many advanced concepts, including planting, pollination, and harvesting.  Our daughter became obsessed with earthworms, and my husband took the opportunity to talk about what an important role they play in helping our garden grow.

After you've learned to operate the garden, say in your 2nd year, plant things that are interesting to see grow.  Some things grow underground, others come up aboveground. Celery is actually the plant, and tomatoes come out of flowers!  Sunflowers are a new addition to our garden this year.  What are we going to do with them? Not quite sure. But they look pretty cool.

Kids can help harvest your bounty, clean, and even cut up garden goods for dinner.  Having the kids prepare dinner is another opportunity for learning, and you can be sure there is little waste at our dinner table after having seen that plants take SO LONG to produce fruit:)

Not quite 3 years old, washing tomatoes from the garden!

And finally, don't forget to have fun - On many evenings, watering the garden turns in to a spontaneous sprinkler fight at my house!

Are you doing any fun Summer activities/projects with your kids? Share in the comments section!

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