Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Spring Into The Season With These Tips For Gardening With Kids

There is nothing more rewarding than a once-bare patch of dirt brimming with zucchini and tomatoes, basil and dill, or flowers. That patch of dirt can be as small as a window box or pot, or a patch by your back door.

Kids love to garden—give them their own plot to tend and award prizes to the biggest tomatoes or pumpkins. There is nothing more fascinating to a child than an edible plant coming out of packet of seeds. Not only is gardening good fun, it teaches:
  • Observation: watching the changes and growth.
  • Responsibility: watering and weeding.
  • Patience: waiting for the fruit or vegetable or flower to mature.
Some easy projects for kids include:
  • Pluck dead blooms from flower beds or containers.
  • Make leaf rubbings using thin paper and a peeled crayon or soft pencil to do various leaf and bark.
  • Grow broccoli sprouts for your family dinner, using 1-T of broccoli seeds and a jar covered with some nylon, secured by a rubber band. Each day allow the seeds to soak in warm water for three minutes, then drain. Directions for how to grow your own sprouts.
  • Put vegetable tops in glasses of water and gravel and watch them sprout! Try onion, radish, sweet potato, beet, parsnip, or turnip. Have older children note the progress in a book or draw what they see.

For more great gardening tips and information about composting, download the ACHS Wellness Guide here.

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