There’s something magical that happens when you take a trip with your little ones through a beautiful garden. We often head to our local botanical gardens on a nice day with the buggy, parcel tray filled with picnic treats – and the kids absolutely love it! It feels great getting out in the fresh air, spending time together and just enjoying nature. At these gardens you can feed the ducks and watch gold fish and tadpoles swimming under lilly pads. The sense of wonder that appears on the kids faces as they peer into the pond is priceless.
Prior to having children, I can assure you anything to do with gardening would of bored me to tears. Fast forward a few years and throw in some curious children ready to explore the big wide world and all of a sudden gardening doesn’t seem that bad…in fact you could nearly say it’s actually quite cool! My daughter loves to plant seeds and grow plants – she has the gardeners touch. I on the other hand am pretty good at making sure the plants don’t survive despite my best efforts…moving right along then…
When my daughter was a toddler she used to spend a lot of time in the garden with her grand mother, which is where she must of picked up her gardening know-how. Now she has her own little pots that she has planted seeds into, and she’s eagerly waiting for them to sprout. So far she’s grown a bumper crop of lettuce which has come in super handy for salads and sandwiches – and can I say is the best tasting lettuce I have ever eaten. She also has a bunch of rhubarb she has been looking after and some beans are on the way. She knows the best time of day to water her plants and I don’t even need to remind her to check on them. To get a child to do anything without having to remind them is a pretty big deal in our home.
In a nutshell, the benefits of gardening with your children in tow are as follows:
* it get’s you and them out in the fresh air and away from the ipad!
* you don’t need a lot of space or equipment – a few containers (recycled are best), some soil, seeds and a few splashes of water is all you need to get started
* it gets you chatting to each other! There is so much to talk about – worms, compost, life cycles, butterflies, dirt, trees…magical garden creatures!?
*you get to spend time together, bonding and enriching your relationship
* it teaches patience, how to be nurturing and caring and it also teaches responsibility
* physical work means you release endorphins instantly boosting your mood
* it provides food for the family – even if it’s just parsley, knowing that you grew it with your children is enough to make it the best tasting parsley in the world…and it’s good for you!! Double winning
Getting kids involved in the garden is tops, who knows they may even be able to teach you a thing or two! Do you enjoy spending time in the garden with your little ones? What is their favourite plant to grow?