Gardening with your kids is a great idea to help them take their eyes off the screens. In addition, gardening also gives your baby the chance to learn different skills, be active, and explore nature by themselves. You can get your little ones involved with gardening from an early age. It gonna be gratifying to watch the young gardener’s interest and self-esteem grow as their gardening efforts have good results. But first, to help them start a garden, it’s important to choose the crops. A suitable crop for your baby should be relatively easy to grow, have short growing seasons, and fun to harvest. So to help you and your kids, here are our 10 ideal crops for your children to start gardening.
Sunflower is a must for your child’s garden. They are great for beginners as they are fairly easy and low maintenance plants. One or two seeds will be good for your child’s garden since they will take a lot of room when grown up. Sunflowers grow very quickly, so children find them particularly exciting. The seeds will sprout in one week, then become a small seedling in two weeks, and should be 2 foot tall in a month. In eight weeks, the buds will flower which contains hundreds of seed kernels. You should let your kids grow confectionery sunflowers, the type grown for food. They will dry naturally in the late summer sun. Their seeds are rich in protein and iron, which can be roasted for snacks. But remember to save a few for next summers’ planting.
If your child wants quick results from gardening, these greens are great choices. They are quick, reliable, and also a good way to interest kids in salads. Lettuce likes to grow in part shade. So you should instruct the young gardener to keep the soil moist, especially during the first two weeks. The seeds will germinate in 7-10 days. The Lettuce’s growing season is normally last 40-50 days. There are some variations for lettuce that you can choose from. You can grow head or leaf varieties. The leaf varieties will mature sooner, about 30-35 days.
Another crop that will grant your baby quick results. Radishes often germinate in 3-10 days, and they have a very short growing season of 20-30 days. They can be planted closely, from four to six feet apart. You should notice to plant in cool weather for a mild radish, or hot weather for a hotter radish.
Snow peas are a quick-growing early crop. But the best part is they are fun for kids to eat right off the vine. They take about 10 days to germinate and mature in about 60 days. Peas prefer cooler, partially shaded locations in the garden. They should be grown closely, about 1 foot apart at most. A lot of parents choose snowpeas as a starter crop for their kids. The snow peas are popular because the pod is edible and since they are a dwarf plant they can be grown without a trellis.
The Most Fun Crop: Cherry Tomatoes
These may be the most fun crop for your baby, aside from strawberries. They can use the seeding to plant instead of planting from seed. Cherry tomatoes should be planted in full sun. Remember to put in a stake alongside each seedling as they need to be tied loosely to stakes when they get taller. This crop requires a lot of compost and water at ground level. You should try to keep leaves dry. The growing season is 50-75 days. Cherry tomatoes can also be grown in containers.
The Beautiful Crop: Nasturtiums
These flowers are easy to grow and yield results quickly, which will encourage your children. They normally bloom after 50 days since the seeds are planted. Nasturtiums can grow up with different colors including orange, yellow, and red flowers. They prefer sunny, dry locations and do well in poor soil. You can choose the shorter varieties for garden beds. Nasturtiums are also pest resistant, which ensures a successful planting. The flowers are also edible and can be used to add color to a fresh garden salad.
This type of crop is fast, easy, high yield, and don’t grow tall. Therefore, they are easy for kids to harvest. Bush beans normally germinate in 4-8 days and mature in 40-65 days. It’s recommended to plant a small patch at first, then another in a few weeks. Doing this will extend the harvest. When choosing seeds, you should select the low bush beans or dwarf beans as these will be easier for children to harvest. Bush beans should be planted closely, about 4 feet apart. This plant prefers to grow in direct sun. Your kids will need to water the soil but try to keep the leaves dry. Bush beans don’t need poles or trellises to grow.
Carrot seeds can be sown directly into the soil and prefer cooler temperatures. They may have slow to germination. Carrots will mature in about 60 days, so your children can learn more about being patient when growing these. You should make sure that the soil is free of rocks. This will make it easy for the carrot to grow ‘down’. Keep well-watered and thin to every 3 feet because crowding will produce foliage but no root. Small varieties are recommended for children, as they’re easier to grow and more fun to eat.
The Never-fail Crop: Potatoes
Potatoes are the never-fail crop. No matter if you plant red or white potato varieties, they will have equal success. But the red will mature faster. In fact, the young gardeners seem to favor the red variety. To start, cut seed potatoes into chunks with at least two eyes per chunk. Then plant them in furrows, about 12-15 feet apart, with eyes pointing upward. Mound soil up around plants as it grows and harvests when the plant collapses.
Pumpkins are the must crop for your child’s garden. They are worth the extra space they take if you have the room. Plant seeds in a small hill; poke three holes in the hill and put one seed in each hole. Pumpkin’s seeds will sprout in about one week. After a few days, the vine leaves begin to form and creep along the ground. Once there are three pumpkins on the vine, pick off any new blossoms. Pumpkins take 80 – 120 days to harvest. You can know a pumpkin that is ready to harvest when it feels hard on the outside and sounds hollow when tapped. You should supervise your kids when they cutting the pumpkin. It’s recommended to use shears in this case. Pumpkin seeds can be dried to eat or save for future planting. The meat can be used for pies and the pumpkin for Halloween carving.
There you go, now you have our 10 ideal crops for your children to start gardening. Do you have any other crops that your baby loves? We’d love to know in the comments