SELECTED ARTICLE
Author
Dave Owen 
Article Title
Your Children Should Learn Vegetable Gardening 
Posted Date
2/25/2007 

If you can create a sense of nature, patience, and an appreciation of work they’ve done themselves in your children, you will have accomplished something great. This will have provided them one of the longest lasting gifts you could give them. One way to accomplish this is to encourage them to learn vegetable gardening. All that is needed is a small patch of earth, some seeds, and water. Some other things that may be added along the way will be wonder, laughter, and dirty faces.

All of this will be mixed together to provide a very memorable project and experience. Obviously, it is best to have your vegetable garden outside. That is if you have the space available. With a good shovel, you can cut an outline of the garden in the grass. Your child can then pull the sod away and set it aside it for composting. This will be another great lesson involving the cycle of nature that can be saved for another day. After you have bare earth, your child can help turn the soil with a spoon or trowel until it’s workable by hand. Have your child place the seeds on the top of the soil, cover lightly with earth, and add water. You have just taught your little one the basics of vegetable gardening!

How Can I have A Vegetable Garden In the City? Even if you do not have a backyard, you can do vegetable gardening. A perfect place for a container garden are apartment balconies. They will get plenty of sun and they will be pretty displays until the vegetables are ripe and ready for harvest. Rather than using plot of earth, your child can fill a container with soil you have purchased from the store. To provide for drainage, you can use a recycled margarine container. Punch holes in the bottom for drainage. Your child can sprinkle on seeds, cover lightly with soil and be responsible for watering the plants every day.

Vegetable gardening can help teache children patience. This is because they have to wait for the seeds to sprout. Once the plant has broken above the soil, they can watch the daily growth of the sprouts. They can follow the growth until the plants are full sized. Because this can be a long process for little kids that may have short attention spans, you might plant something new every week. This will keep them entertained for the whole summer. After the plants have bloomed, you and your child can read about how they will soon grow food. Your kids will be excited to finally see little red tomatoes or green peppers appear on their plant. It can be a satisfying experience for the children of today’s throwaway society.

Returning to the olden days, when we raised our own fruits and vegetables. Not just for the hard work but for the feeling of accomplishment. When children know that what we buy in the store is not the only option as to how we get our food instils a sense of responsibility. They will carry this feeling and knowledge with them all their lives. As they grow older, they will think back on their vegetable gardening with fond memories. And they will probably share the experience with their own children.

References
Dave Owen is the owner of My Garden, where you can learn with me as I create a new garden… 
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