the kids vegetable garden
Kids are intrigued with nature and will often welcome the idea of creating a garden of their very own, especially a vegetable garden. Vegetable gardens give kids the opportunity to explore all parts of the growing process, from the depths of garden soil to the bounties of garden crops that soon follow. And all the while, their hungry curiosity about the natural world is being fed. You'll see it in their eyes, brimming with pride and joy as they pick their first season's harvest. You'll hear in their voices as they tell everyone about their garden!
Planning the Vegetable Garden
1. When planning the kid's vegetable garden, let them not only choose the plants, but also the location and the layout. Just be sure that the vegetable garden is located in a sunny area and easily able to be watered. Also, make sure that it is easily viewed by you, so the kids can be supervised while in the garden whenever you are not in the yard with them.
2. Vegetable gardens do not have to be laid out in traditional rectangular plots, unless of course, the kids want it to be. Vegetable gardens can be designed and grown in raised beds or containers. This works especially well for areas with little space. Vegetable gardens can also be grown in a circular pattern with various sections divided out by different plants, much like slices of pizza.
3. Allow kids to use their imagination and the possibilities are endless. Offer your ideas, but let them come up with some of their own. Suggest the inclusion of a sitting area or perhaps even a secluded play area. After all, most kids love hide-outs.
4. Let the kids help with the soil preparation, seed planting and maintenance. To help encourage these gardening tasks, provide them with kid-sized tools of their own and a special place for storing them. Use this opportunity as a teaching tool about the importance of healthy soil, proper watering, and weeding in the garden. Kids often enjoy learning when given hands-on instruction.
5. Explain the role of various wildlife in the vegetable garden, and how both plants and animals depend on one another for their survival. Do not over stimulate them, however. Allow kids to move and learn at their own pace, keeping everything age appropriate.
6. During harvest time, be sure to teach kids the importance of only eating from plants that are safe. Kid's will greatly enjoy seeing the results of their hard work when harvesting and enjoying their crops.