We love having a home garden and May Long weekend is the time we get it all started! Gardening provides a great introduction to eating healthy foods, and how vegetables are grown. Kids will learn and taste, the difference between homegrown vegetables and those store-bought vegetables.
Here are some tips and reasons for having your own garden.
1, Make it simple for the kids to get involved. No need to build a super fancy expensive garden box. Dig a hole edge it with rocks, wood, edging. Add in some peat moss to loosen the soil, and start planting. This year we are limited in space so we built a raised step garden – my husband cut out stairs and put a board across and viola! we planted our garden in pots this year vs in ground ( we also have 2 puppies who LOVE vegetables so it keeps them out)
2. Let them help choose the seeds. Some easy things to grow in Calgary are: peas, carrots, romaine, tomatoes, potatoes, onions, carrots, raspberries, strawberries to name a few.
3. Have them water the garden. Go to the dollar store and get a cute watering can they can easily hold and let them water the garden each day – this is also a great chance for to keep a daily check on how their plants are doing.
4. It gets them eating fresh from the garden snacks. My girls LOVE playing around in the yard and picking all the fresh peas to munch on or the tomatoes (we had to plant 16 plants this year to be able to keep up with the demand of fresh tomatoes) there is no way I am going to stop them from eating all those veggies!
5.You are making memories. Spending time in the garden with your kids will strengthen family bonds, and build treasured memories.
6. It gets them outside! Water the garden .. water the grass. the trees. A simple activity can lead to more time outdoors and all the fresh air – which leads to better naps!
7. It is a great teaching tool even from a young age. If you start your seedlings indoors when you transplant into the garden it allows kids to look at roots and learn how they absorb water. While digging in the dirt, kids will find earthworms, a discovery which can be turned into a opportunity to teach them about how worms support healthy gardens.
8. Teaches them about sharing.When your kids watch you sharing the fruits of your labor, they learn the lessons of generosity and community building. In short, they learn to be good citizens.
9. Did I already say it gets them outside AND eating more veggies? 🙂
Now go .. plany away with your little ones and enjoy!