Growing your own: Little gardeners are more likely to try fruit and veg that they had a hand in growing
IF YOU are like us you will be racking your brains thinking of wholesome activities to keep the kids entertained. Kids get a lot from gardening and growing vegetables. They get exercise and fresh air. They also get a better understanding of how food is produced. It will also encourage them to eat more veg as growing it becomes a part of their lives. I have included some great starting plants to get kids interested in gardening.
This is a great vegetable not only for kids but for anyone trying veg for the first time. The seeds are not expensive and the plants grow easily from seed. You will also be able to harvest in only a couple months. You can sow them in seed trays or where they are to grow -you don’t need much space. And once you get a crop you can simply sow again for a second and then third crop. When plating seedlings, plant them in bunches of 5. This will mean you have convenient bunches of spring onion coming along.
Radish is probably the quickest veg to grow from seed to harvest taking only a few weeks to grow. The radishes you grow in your own garden taste much better than ones bought in-store. Again, they don’t take up much space. Use them by slicing them thinly and sprinkling over salads.
Strawberry is by far my most favourite fruit to grow. Strawberries grow from runners. These are, in effect, baby plants that shoot out from adult plants at the end of summer. If you plant these runners they will grow into adult plants and provide strawberries. Our strawberry plants provided so much fruit this summer we nearly got fed-up of eating them.
Beetroot are a great one for kids to start with. They grow easily from seed, the seed it large enough to handle and the beetroot can be used in many different dishes. Beetroot prefer to be grown in moist, fertile soil in a sunny spot, but will also thrive in raised beds or pots.
Our five-year-old twins are consistently asking to help in our garden. Although it is sometimes hard to find them a job that is suitable they are always happy to go watering. This is a great task for them because it teaches them responsibility.
It is also a task that they can hardly get wrong. We have a couple of miniature watering cans that we use for house plants. For the moment these watering cans have been handed over to the kids. My final words are around planting flower seed, in fact, any type of seed. If you happen to have a pack of seed- even if they several years old- sow them! Follow the sowing instructions on the pack as best you can.
With a bit of luck, you’ll have success. One thing is for sure, the seeds will never grow if left in the pack.
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