I’ve always had potted plants: herbs, flowers, and often some cherry tomatoes. Last year we were able to expand our gardening a bit and we had a small raised bed to garden in. And this year we’re using another small area of our yard to plant some of our favorites: tomatoes, zucchini, peppers, and melons. I’m just a beginner at this gardening thing, but I do love it and my kids do too.**This post contains affiliate links which means if you make a purchase through one of my links, I’ll receive a small commission. Thanks for supporting More Than Mundane!
There are lots of great reasons to garden with kids:
- Learning: Kids can get hands on, real-life experience on how plants work, and what they need to survive.
- Responsibility: Kids can learn how to take care of something, and see first hand the rewards that come with hard work and care.
- Grows their love of vegetables: For some reason, my kids will try something that they’ve been refusing for years if I say it came from a friend’s garden or our garden.
- Family Time: Spending time together as a family outdoors, working on a common goal is fun!
Even before it’s time to plant your garden, you can begin to get the kids excited about gardening by reading with them. These are some of my favorite children’s picture books about gardening, planting, and spring:
Water, Weed, Wait by Edith Hope Fine: This book about a teacher who encourages her students to plant a garden at their school shows how team work and community can make something beautiful! It also has a helpful section filled with information on starting your own garden.
Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney: This lovely story is about making the world a more beautiful place and does a great job at showing what can happen from some little seeds.
Planting a Rainbow by Lois Ehlert: This gorgeous book is all about the flowers! It teaches kids how to plant, nurture and grow flowers and shows all the flowers from each color of the rainbow.
After doing some reading and learning about how things grow, let your kids help plan what you’ll plant in the garden. You could have them draw out a picture of the garden and what they might want to grow. You can help them figure out what each different flower, vegetable, or herb needs to grow. Teach them how much sunlight each plant needs, and which plants do well together.
Then, let them come with you when you get your seeds or plants. We have so much fun every year taking our trip to the gardening store. Letting the kids take part in the planning and purchasing helps them feel invested in the gardening process and increases their interest.
And of course, let them help out with planting. Last year my son basically just moved dirt from one area of the yard to another, but he had fun! I love this Kids Garden Tool Set, and find it’s much easier if they have some of their own special tools to use so mine don’t disappear when I need them.
Remember, you can start out small! Start with a few flowers and herbs in pots. Or even a couple tomato plants. Nothing is better than garden fresh tomatoes!
Here are some more ideas for gardening with kids.