When my daughter was two, I decided I wanted to have a vegetable garden that I could share with her. My mom and both of my grandmothers were gardeners and had green thumbs while me, not so much. But I had desire, and the internet to help me learn! I stuck to plants that were kid friendly and easy to grow (for both of us though that year was more for me). She’s four now and we’ve had both success and failure, but what we’ve had most is fun! My daughter will eat any vegetable I set in front of her and enjoys helping shop for new vegetables to try. I attribute that to our gardening adventures.
In today’s blog, I wanted to share a list of plants that are great starter plants for either new or young gardeners. Please enjoy!
You can go for the bush or the runner bean varieties. Bush beans are easy to cultivate, but you yield more beans with the runner variety as you can grow them over arches, tunnels, or my personal favorite – in a teepee form!
- Pick a spot for your bean teepee. You want to be sure your teepee doesn’t overshadow your other plants. You want a spot that will drain well but also have easy access to water.
- You’ll want at least 4 or 5 supports. These can be branches, or wood from a store. Just remember, if the surface is rough it makes it easier for your plants to get a grip on them.
- Stick your poles in the ground evenly spread and lean them together at the top. Now tie them together near the top.
- Use twine to make rungs on your frame to give your plants something to grip on the way up. But make sure to leave an entrance between to the of the frame pieces to allow you and your child a door into the teepee.
- Sow seeds around each pole and around the edge of your frame. Cover the seeds.
- Now you care for your seeds according to their growing directions and watch your bean teepee grow! It’ll make a wonderful spot for your children to rest or play!
While not a fruit or a vegetable, I’ve included sunflowers in the list because they’re hardy, easy to grow and will delight your children. Depending on the variety of seeds you purchase, your sunflowers could grow up to 15 feet tall and their seeds make a delicious snack.
Strawberries are my daughter’s favorite thing to grow. She finds great joy in watching the little things grow and turn red. As soon as they’re ready to pluck she’s got them off the vine, washed and in her mouth!
Strawberries can be grown in any part of your yard and can take up either a small or large space depending on what you have available. We were short of garden space so our strawberries grew in a pot on the back patio.
Tomatoes are easy to grow if the leaves don’t get too wet though they do prefer warmer climates. Cherry tomatoes are smaller and sweeter and perfect for little hands. This was another plant I rarely got to eat as my daughter made off with them as soon as they were ready. She now eats these as a snack all year round with no prodding on my part.
Radishes prefer a damper or colder climate and need little maintenance. Hotter climates also make them more spicy which is not the best for encouraging young gardenings to eat them. The important thing to remember is that you have to make sure the bulbs have room to grow. They are ready to harvest in as little as 25 days. Just remember that one radish seed yields a single radish – so plant enough to yield a healthy harvest. Your kids will enjoy pulling the radishes out of the dirt when they are ready to harvest.
Gardening Tools Help
It’s never too early to start getting together the tools you’re going to need this Spring in your garden! Here are a few offerings we think you’ll love!
Picnic Time Garden Metro Basket
The Garden Metro Basket is a lightweight collapsible basket that is a welcome addition to any serious gardener’s tool shed. It features a sturdy aluminum frame, a water-resistant base, a convenient tool pocket on its exterior, a stain-resistant interior, and a unique folding inner frame that allows the basket to stand on it own and collapse fully for storing away. The Garden Metro Basket includes 1 small potting trowel, 1 rake, and 1 standard trowel all with looped straps at the end of each tool for hanging. Buy it now for $62.95 and get 7 Free Bids!
Flowerhouse 3-Foot Portable Starterhouse Greenhouse
FlowerHouse StarterHouse Portable Greenhouse self-erecting pop-up greenhouse for the home gardener. Extend your growing season and garden year-round. Sets up in minutes with no tools required! FlowerHouses promote and maintain high humidity levels desirable for a superior growing environment. Buy it now for $72.99 and get 8 Free Bids!
Trademark Home Garden Hose Storage Center
Easily store up to 150 feet of 5/8 inch hose on this wall mounted unit. Additional storage space for hose nozzles and other garden and lawn tools is available behind a hinged door on the front of the unit. Put your water hose in its place with the Hose House from Trademark Home Collection. Buy it now for $24.99 and get 3 Free Bids!
This article was written by Valerie, an admin for the Gardening With Children page. Gardening With Children is a Facebook page about having fun with your children. It focuses on spending time outdoors gardening, gardening related crafts and games, recipes filled with garden fresh fruits and vegetables, and building an appreciation of the world around us. Like their page to get regular updates!
Products shown are currently for US customers, but may vary per market and subject to availability.