Gardening is a wonderful activity that kids of every age can enjoy. Children can learn new skills, have fun, play, ground themselves and develop self-confidence by digging in the soil, getting dirty, tending to plants and watching them grow.
Give Kids Their Own Space
Giving your kids their own area in the garden that is something that can take a bit of time to get right, especially if you don’t have much space. However, there are things you can do to draw your children’s attention to this specific area. Sand filled boxes, playpens, climbing playgrounds or even little plastic outside playhouses will keep the kids occupied with imaginary play. Remember, kids like to play and get dirty, especially when they’re younger, so try and make it as fun as you can. Instead of staying inside and play video games, watch the screen or text each other, kids can happily splash in the pool. There is a multitude of water games they can play while swimming in the water. Filled plastic pools or you can research best above ground pools for varying sizes so you can get one that suits your space and needs. Another idea is to take them to a clubhouse pool so they can interact with other kids and play actively together.
Get Them Actively Involved In What You’re Doing
If you have a green thumb, and you want to pass this habit on to your children, getting them to take part in gardening activities can be quite a challenge. Giving your children the chance to dig in their own vegetable garden gets them actively involved in the whole process. Children nowadays don’t have a chance to be exposed to gardening activities as much as before. If you can get children involved as early as possible, by making a dedicated gardening space to plant seeds and watch them grow, will promote their love for nature. Granted, you might not get much usable produce, but is that really the goal? When my kids were little we played “catch me if you can” game around the vegetable garden. My intention was for them to rip off and eat as many baby tomatoes as they can, pretending that they will be caught by me if I get them. They ran circles, burning off all the energy while eating organic tomatoes. Even today, I reflect on that happy memory.
Developing Their Gardening Abilities
It is a learning process, and if you want children to develop an interest in gardening, then you have to let them make mistakes. Maybe they will forget to water the plants, group them too closely together, plant seeds too deep, too shallow, or in the wrong place, it is all a part of a learning curve. The more mistakes they make earlier in life, the better. As the time goes on, kids will gain enough confidence to learn self-sustaining practices. Moreover, the health benefits of gardening will provide a soft and continuous therapeutic effect on the kid’s daily wellbeing. Harvesting their own fruits of labor increases the sense of accomplishment and ability to further believe in their own abilities.
What About The Neighbors?
Let’s be honest, not all humans get along and not all kids either. What if you want to drink your coffee outside on your porch and the kid next door observes you stepping out and wonders in to play. What if the neighbors have curious dogs that want to run in to say hello. There are multiple scenarios that might disturb your privacy and my idea of a row of bushes can provide an excellent physical, but a natural barrier. Roses, blackberries, hydrangeas, ligustrum, forsythias, tall grasses, and willows would be the idyllic esthetically pleasing barriers that are friendly to pollinators and wildlife as well.
Watch Your Property
Sometimes children like to break rules and cross the property lines to munch on your prized tree fruits or berry bushes. While you might not want to go this far, maybe it’s time to install a motion detection surveillance camera. Yes, this may be overkill, but if you’ve got someone trespassing constantly and it’s proving to be an absolute nuisance, installing one of these might be the best deterrent. Especially if you are at work or traveling, the camera will help you keep your property safe and you will know exactly who is coming and going.
Make it a very green and fun day.
Until next time, dear friends.