We love gardening with kids and recently we have moved from a large garden that was well established but too much for our busy family to deal with to a new build house with a great sized garden for our family but it is a blank canvas. Using the experience we have from gardening as well as the gardening club I used to run at a school I taught I’m putting together resources for parents and teachers on Gardening with Kids.
Quick Growing Plant Varieties for Kids
Following on from our popular post on Quick Growing Plant Varieties for Kids here are our shopping list from Thomson and Morgan in the UK and from Amazon.com in the US. These are varieties as well as flowers and vegetables that grow quickly and can tolerate tougher conditions that others. Plus many have other purposes like attracting pollinators to your garden or are edible.
Fast Growing Flower Seeds
- Morning Glory Morning Glory Seeds online at Thompson and Morgan or Amazon.com
- Sweet Peas Sweet Pea Seeds in the UK or Amazon.com
- Nasturtiums Nasturtium Tom Thumb brightly coloured mix in the UK or Mixed Colour Nasturtium US from Amazon.com
- Marigolds Marigold seeds from Thompson and Morgan in the UK or Amazon.com in the USA.
- Poppies ladybird poppies in the UK and in the USA
- Sunflowers Russian Giants in the UK or the Mongolian Giants in the USA
- Snap Dragons purple twists in the UK are one of my favourites and these White Spanish ones in the USA.
- Wallflowers My Fair Lady mix from Thompson and Morgan in the UK or an English Garden Mix from Amazon.com in the USA.
Fast Growing Vegetable Seeds
- Salad bowl mixed lettuce Seeds – Bright and Spicy in the UK or Mesclun in the USA
- Cress or Mustard Seeds – Extra Curled (UK) and Fine Curled (USA)
- Beans – Runner beans are smaller plants and grow quicker than other varieties Speedy in the UK has a great taste and one of the heirloom varieties in the US looks pretty as it grows as well as tasting great.
- Carrots – Carrot Parmex are perfect for kids producing little round carrots in the UK and why not try growing Little Finger carrots perfect for kids in the USA.
- Radish – Try French Breakfast in the UK or how about Radish Watermelon in the USA
- Herbs – Pick variety packs that let you sample different herbs like the Herb Collection in the UK or this themed herb collection from the USA
Attract these beautiful kids favourite ladybirds to your garden or backyard by planting some of their favourite flowers and other ideas.
Gardening with Kids
Digging and planting, watering and weeding. Check out these ideas for gardening with kids including some fantastic recipes that we have made using the food grown from our own vegetable patches.
- Over the years we’ve grown a lot of seeds with kids – from using cardboard tubes.
- To egg cartons which can then be placed in the soil as well.
- We’ve grown our own Ketchup in more traditional pots and then used the tomatoes to make delicious bruschetta with the kids.
- Read the Carrot Seed and then planted our own carrots and used them to make our own Carrot Cake Muffins.
- Grow your own Rhubarb and then make it into delicious Rhubarb Crumble.
- Used pringle containers to start off seeds with toddlers as they are a perfect size and we ALWAYS seem to have some laying around after the birthday’s earlier in the year.
- Taken Halloween pumpkins and grown our own from them.
- As well as made seed bombs to throw to grow wildflower garden wherever they land.
- And beans in jars to look at the roots.
- Plus see new growth from old with carrot tops.
Garden Crafts for Kids to Make
- Make your own whimsical garden beads to decorate the garden with until those plants grow and create flags as garden markers so that you know what you have planted all season long.
- Make your own stone plant markers for the pots and beds in the garden with the kids or with younger kids you could make these simple plant markers that kids can make and use (these lasted a couple of years!)
- Make a simple wind chime to hang up in the garden or use some finds from the sea shore to make it.
- Hang up a handmade wind sock and always know which direction the wind is blowing.
- Decorate pots in the garden – both with toddlers and inspired by Roald Dahl’s book The Minpin.
Discover our Favourite Garden Books to Read with your Green-fingered Kids!
Learning in the Garden
The garden provides such a great place to explore and learn in. Check out some of these ideas for simple learning activities to do in the garden with kids.
- Use the pretty weeds for some maths with this natural ten frame to help with number bonds, addition, and subtraction.
- Learn about food chains and create your own with these garden based food chain science.
- Build a bird box and watch the birds nest through spring and then come autumn clean out and see what a real nest looks like!
- Create a log pile home inspired by the Gruffalo and provide a safe haven for lots of different creatures throughout the year.
- Look at the different textures that can be found in the garden.
- Use sticks as maths manipulatives in the garden to work on sorting and ordering.
- Explore what happens after it rains with kids as the bugs and creepy crawlies appear.
- Build a wormery so that you can see what happens under the soil and the role that worms play in the garden.
- Head out during a rain storm and see how hard is it raining?
- Make your own simple weather station and graph the changes over time.
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