Monday, May 31, 2010

growing up with veggies

jamie oliver’s food revolution and the time for lunch campaign has really inspired me to get my kids growing their own veggies this spring. it’s rewarding on so many levels and may even help soothe and relax us as some days are a little too busy. we'll get to spend time together, and we can then prepare and eat all the goodness that we grow. so, they’ll taste new things. all we need to do is make a plan, keep it simple and give them a little know-how they’ll use forever.

make a plan

get a seed catalog or visit a local nursery with your kids and have them pick out the vegetables they want to plant either from seeds or seedlings.

i like choosing a few unusual vegetables like multi-colored cauliflower or carrots (sometimes these will get very curly if planted too close) and prehistoric looking broccoli.

if you feel unsure about what to plant, kits specifically for kids and novices make it a bit easier to grow a selection of everything from herbs to tomatoes or even a “rainbow of vegetables”

sit with your little one to draw a garden plan on paper so they can start visualizing what it will look like and the things they wish to grow....maybe a cookie tree.

get planting

find a nice sunny spot in your garden or a container for your patio or balcony, and there are many options available (window boxes, planters, raised beds, etc).
i have noticed that a lot of our garbage is actually stuff that would be very beneficial to a garden. we might try an odor-free countertop composter.

to add to the lesson of how stuff grows, have the kids plant a few seeds in a transparent container so they can watch what happens under the soil (like an ant farm for veggies)

having kid-sized garden tools or at least more than 1 of each is key to a peaceful experience....i haven't quite figured out how many of each we need because hudson always seems to find a way to carry more and more all at once!!! but, this guarantees they can get into the work too and they may just have a lot of energy to burn. nuchi (a wisconsin based toy company) offers this colorful set.

a mini wheelbarrow holds your equipment, dirt and plants and is lightweight enough for the kids to be able to transport everything on their own.

books to help

plant a rainbow  and growing vegetable soup by lois elhert
tops and bottoms by janet stevens "ONCE upon a time there lived a very lazy bear who had lots of money and lots of land."
the ugly vegetables by grace lin

family treat

you have spent all day digging in the dirt now try this yummy dessert. give your kids a small bowl of chocolate pudding, sprinkle some crushed oreos on top and have them mix their "soil". once the dirt is ready have them plant their own lollipop flower.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Sarah-

    Really enjoyed this post. We too are gardeners and the kids were old enough to help this year! Love the books you suggested.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...