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Safe, fun gardening with kids
Kids can have a lot of fun gardening, with a responsible adult along to make sure they don't hurt themselves (or the plants).
Gardening is not only good exercise, it's a great learning experience, and children can see the results for themselves. And with vegetables and fruit and herbs - they can eat their results.
Many primary schools now have their own gardens for the children to grow food for their lunches. While they're having fun in the garden, kids are also learning positive attitudes and new skills:
How to get children interested in gardening
Children love food, and they love playing in the dirt, so why not put the two together and create an edible garden with your children?
Remember to keep it simple, and within their abilities, or just a bit harder to stretch them and keep them interested.
Remember the birds and the bees, and the cats and dogs, caterpillars and frogs, spiders and ants. Kids love learning about the creatures around them, so see what you can find in your garden
Tips for gardening with kids:
- Give children their own garden space; it doesn't have to be big - it can start in a large container or in a few pots.
- Encourage children to dig in the dirt. Younger children love making mud pies
- Involve older children in the planning and design of the garden.
- Use lightweight, easy to handle and correct size tools and garden equipment.
- Plant interesting and quick growing plants like sunflowers, corn, pumpkins, tomatoes and strawberries.
- Grow unusual plants like cacti and carnivorous plants
- Make a trellis or tepee to grow beans and snowpeas.
- Plant flowers that attract butterflies, ladybirds and other interesting insects or birds.
Suggested projects to do with your kids:
- Make a scarecrow
- Dig a pond
- Install a water feature, birdbath or sundial
- Set up a worm farm
- Build a bird-feeding table
- Build a cubby house
- Build a treehouse
- Make a swing
- Make a rockery
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