9 Fun Gardening Ideas For Kids
If you want to be creative with your garden projects, here are nine fantastic and easy-to-do ideas you can try with materials available at home. Your children are sure to enjoy these fun projects
By Monali Bordoloi
Gardening simply does not allow one to be mentally old, because too many hopes and dreams are yet to be realized. – Allan Armitage, professor of horticulture at the University of Georgia, US
During the lockdown, I introduced gardening to my 6-year-old and 4-year-old sons, and they took to it like fish to water. Of course, it was little messy at the beginning, but soon we started to look forward to our gardening sessions. Every morning, ever since their school closed down, we tend to our front garden and the potted plants in the porch. Both of them helped me in planting, watering, removing weeds, etc. My youngest one took watering the plants so seriously that we had to remind him to stop.
To keep things interesting, I have assigned two tiny corner plots of land to each of them. They have to tend to their plots on their own. They can choose the plants to plant or decorate that patch however they like it. So, there are lots of colourful garden markers, doll-like scarecrows, cute plastic bottle planters, animal toys and what not on those patches.
Tending to the garden has become our great family bonding activity every morning. Even when we are not gardening, we discuss, what plants to grow, how to germinate the seeds, how to keep the pests away and both my children participate and offer their suggestions! Their wide-eyed wonder when the seeds sprouted for the first time was a priceless experience for us parents! Now, we are waiting for the first yield of our garden, spinach and coriander. — Meenakshi Shenoy, Bangalore
Many took to tending to plants during this Coronavirus-induced lockdown as people have more time in hand and gardening is a huge stress buster. The best part is that the entire family can be involved in it and children love to dig their hands into dirt! You do not have to own huge patches of land or garden to start gardening. Even tending to a few potted plants in your balcony or terrace could turn into a great family activity. It is something that you all can do during these stay-at-home days and after.
Moreover, gardening is a great way to teach valuable life and even science lessons to your child! If you are planning to indulge in gardening with your child, we would recommend that you try out these nine amazingly easy, fun and interesting gardening ideas. And don’t worry if your projects do not turn out like the ones on Pinterest, just enjoy the activity together.
Puja Gurung, founder of Honey Bees Nature Club in Bangalore says that gardening can teach your child many things, which even formal schooling may not address. She says, "Gardening provides a practical understanding of biology, chemistry, geography, history, nutrition and health. It is not just about planting or sowing seeds, it can enhance a child's overall well-being."
So, here are nine exciting gardening ideas you can do with your child. Most of the materials needed for these projects are easily available at home. All you need is a can full of enthusiasm and a tiny little helper or two to start your fun gardening projects.
Nine gardening projects for kids
1. Egg head planters
Wash the egg after emptying the yolk. You can draw the face of a boy, girl or a rabbit or anything on the eggshell with a marker. Now, with the help of a spoon, put some soil in it. Fill it till half. Plant some fast-growing greens like methi or coriander. Water it lightly. Attach the egghead to a cardboard base and keep it in a sunny, airy spot. Wait for two weeks. When the greens grow, it would look like hair has grown for the face of the eggshell. You can make a bunch of it and keep it in your windowsill. Your kids will love this!
2. Old tin can planters
This one is pretty simple. We all have some unused tin cans in the kitchen. Take one and give it a good wash and use it as a planter. You can ask your little Picasso at home to unleash her imagination and paint or draw something on it.
3. Painted pebbles as garden or plant marker
Yes, children instantly like rock or pebble painting. Give them some rocks and ask them to paint them how they like. You can then place it like a decorative item in the garden. Another idea – write the name of the plant or herb you are planting on the rock and place it next to the plant. Read our article on pebble painting for more details.
4. Egg tray as seed bed
Discarded egg trays can be used in many ways. Making them a seed bed is one of them. Ask your child to fill each slot of an egg tray with some potting soil. Plant some seeds in it. Do not let it get dry. Spray some water to it regularly to keep it moist. Keep it in a shady but warm place. Ask your child to check regularly for sprouts. Once the seedlings are two inches tall, transfer them to bigger pots.
5. Inverted plastic bottle planters
Plastic water bottles can be easily used as a planter. However, to make things more interesting for your child, why not use it upside down? Yes, you can do it by cutting off the bottom part of the bottle and hanging the bottle upside down with the help of some strings. Just be a little careful when you plant the sapling from the tiny opening of the bottle. Creepers or plants that trails will do well in inverted planters. Check out the video.
6. Bird feeder from old water bottle
If you are planning gardening projects with children, building a bird feeder for the garden is a must. Involve your children in making a hanging bird feeder from an old water bottle for the garden. Or you can hang one from your balcony. It would be a great lesson in recycling too. Some water bottles come with instructions on how to turn it into a bird feeder!
Glass terrariums looks amazing and easy to arrange at home. Most children are fascinated by terrariums. If you have teenagers at home, encourage them to build and style their own terrariums. For younger children, help them to understand the eco-system of the terrariums by doing it with them. Check out the video to know how to make one. There are kits you can buy too!
8. Growing plants in water
Try hydroponic gardening or growing plants without any soil with your children. They will be excited to see the end result when you can yield greens and other vegetables without using any soil. Check out this video to learn how to go about it.
9. Chipped cups succulent planter
We all have some chipped cups and mugs at home. The next fun gardening project is to tum them into a planter or micro plant holder. Here, sky is the limit as to what you can turn into a planter. Give yours and your children’s creativity a chance as you can even turn your old cream jars, lotion containers, unused water bottle, old jeans pants, old pots and pans into beautiful and unique planters. Try growing succulent and cacti in smaller pots. Paint and decorate your planters and make it a work of art.
When it comes to gardening projects, the Internet is flooded with many innovative, unique and even quirky ideas. Check out art and craft sites and photo sharing sites like Pinterest and Instagram for more ideas. Once you decide on a project, discuss the details with your children to keep them interested. Here is wishing you green days ahead and happy parenting!
Also read: Health Benefits Of Gardening For Your Child
About the author:
Written by Monali Bordoloi on 3 July 2020.
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