It is National Children’s Gardening Week this week, 29th May – 4th June, and we want you to celebrate by getting your kids involved in gardening this summer.
Gardening is a great activity for children and adults alike – it is good exercise and an excellent way for children to learn about plants, animals and insects, as well as getting them to stop staring at a screen (for a few minutes at least!).
Here are some ideas you can use to get your child gardening. These activities are suitable for kids of all ages and are lots of fun!
- Plant seeds!
It sounds obvious – but it’s the easiest and best way to get kids interested in gardening. They love planting a seed and watching it sprout. It gives them the opportunity to care for and nurture the plant, and if you get them growing vegetables, children are more likely to eat something that they have helped to grow!
Some of the seeds that are easier to grow than others, and are big and easy to handle, are: peas, sunflowers and broad beans.
- Build a bug hotel
This one is great for children to be creative and get a bit messy, but it’s also a good excuse for you to tidy up the garden, too.
First, gather any old bricks, wood, rocks, slates, logs, stones, tubes, plant pots and anything else you can find.
Start building – the design and how you approach this is up to you, just make sure it is going to stand on a reasonably flat, firm base, so that it doesn’t topple over. I would recommend creating a stable platform using bricks, then pile up the other bits and bobs you find. The aim is to create a tower of objects that have plenty of holes, nooks and crannies, perfect for hundreds of insects to call home.
- Plant a butterfly garden
This one isn’t the easiest or quickest, but planting flowers that attract both caterpillars and butterflies will delight your children.
You can choose which flowers you grow based on which butterflies you would like to attract. For example, milkweed attracts the beautiful Monarch butterfly. Many meadow flowers and dandelions, daisies and everlastings also attract a range of different types of butterfly including Orange Sulphur and Eastern Black Swallowtail.
Plant your butterfly garden in an area of your garden that gets plenty of sun, but isn’t too exposed to the wind.
Whatever you decide to do, just remember to keep chemical-based products, as well as gardening tools and equipment, locked away and safely out of children’s reach.
Let us know how you’re getting your children interested in gardening this summer!