Gardening for Kids
Making gardening fun for kids
Benefits of kids in the garden
There are many fun ways to introduce gardening to a child, and children who learn how to garden at an early age will benefit in so many healthy ways.
1. For one it gets them out of the house, where they can breathe fresh air and soak up some beneficial vitamin D.
2. Encourages family time, teaches children how to work with Mom, Dad and other siblings.
3. Healthy diet, educates them as to where some of their food comes from, and hopefully encourages them to eat what they grow.
4. They get exercise, digging, raking, and pushing a garden cart/ wheelbarrow can be great exercise.
5. Teaches them how to set goals, work hard and reap the benefits of their labor.
6. Teaches children environmental awareness
7. Love for learning, all children possess the desire to learn, and teaching a child to garden is hands on experience that they can easily understand, and so many valuable life lesson can be taught to a child through gardening.
8. Teaches them nurturing skills.
9. Teaches children patience.
10. Gardening can enhance a child’s math, science and biology skills with hands on learning and experiments.
The list can go on and on of the many benefits associated with kids in the garden. One fun gardening project that you and the whole family can enjoy is building garden teepees. Garden teepees are a great way to attract your little ones into the garden and even the adults have fun hanging out in these shady little forts on a hot summer’s day, snacking on some string beans.
How to build a garden teepee
There really is no right or wrong way to build a garden teepee, the most important thing is that it is sturdy, and has plenty of trellis like structure to it for your plants to climb. A decent height for constructing a garden teepee should be 10 to 12 feet tall. You could use 2X4 lumber or long tree limb braches. Place your desired lumber/poles in a cone like shape and either screw/nail the top pieces together, or tie them with rope. Give yourself some room at the bottom. Say if you are using four poles at 10 to 12 feet high have them spaced out at the bottom a good, 4-5 feet. Once you have the teepee shape framed, you then will need to sheath it with aluminum wire or rope, lattice, thin boards, anything really that will act as a trellis to have a climbing plant like cucumbers or string beans a place to attach to. Be sure not to forget to leave yourself a nice entrance.
What to plant
Now that your teepee is constructed it is time to select what you want to grow on your teepee. There are many climbing flowers and vegetable to choose from like morning glory, cucumbers and gourds. The most popular plant to use for teepees is string beans. Be sure that you are using runner beans and not bush beans. The runners will climb all the way to the top of your teepee, the bush beans will not. String beans are a healthy snack that your kids and entire family will enjoy harvesting /snacking on all summer long.
So what are you waiting for, teach a kid how to garden, and HAVE FUN!