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How to Teach Your Kids to Love Gardening

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Here’s why teaching your kids to love gardening is good for both you and them – along with some garden tasks they can help with!

Getting your kids involved in the garden is a good thing – both for you and for them!

Not only does gardening teach a number of valuable life skills (patience, adaptability, discipline, etc.), it also helps kids appreciate the natural environment and develop a sense of responsibility. Plus, besides bonding time with your family, you also get a garden helper! 🙂

As Melissa over at The Grow Network says, “Outside in the garden is perhaps the best place to teach kids how to be good helpers, get them excited about food, and become closer as a family.”

Get your kids involved in the garden, and help them learn the value of caring for the world around them. After all, your kids will help determine the future of this planet!

If you’re not sure what to put them to work on, are just a few of the ways that kids can help in the garden:

There are many kid-sized activities in and around the garden.  Some of the things they can tackle include:

  • Planting
  • Weeding
  • Watering
  • Controlling pests
  • Harvesting

Planting:

Planting starts with seed selection. Children love to pick out their favorite foods from the seed aisle or catalog. They love to imagine what the fruits of their labor will look and taste like…

Be sure to help them pick out some quick growing crops such as lettuce, baby carrots, and bush beans. Having your child choose quick-growing crops ensures they can continue to be excited during the early and slow parts of the season.

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Weeding, the chore everyone loves to hate

Luckily, pulling plants apart and out of the ground is a natural pastime for little hands. We need only guide their enthusiasm to ensure some of our crops remain to maturity. The time is perfect to discuss each plant that grows and answer some important questions such as:

  • What “weeds” are in the wrong place?
  • Which plants provide for us and each other?
  • How do plant friends help each other?
  • What types of plants don’t get along with “this plant?”

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Controlling pests combines two forces of nature: bugs and bug squishers

Bugs are some of the most fascinating and terrifying creatures in the lives of our children. Introducing them to harmful as well as beneficial insects sets the tone for their relationship with these creatures for the rest of their lives…

Point out the pollinators, and tell the kids how bees and butterflies help fruit and vegetables grow. Talk about the life cycle of a butterfly. Tell them how bees work together to make honey.

Tell them about beneficial predators such as the praying mantis, ninja of the bug world, and the Braconid wasp, killer of hornworms.

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Read more at TheGrowNetwork.com

 

Kids and Gardening: Fertilizing Our Future

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