Gardening seems to be a natural progression in any child’s life. Children have been read and told stories about gardens since birth. Contrary Mary had silver bells in her garden, Jack couldn’t have saved the farm without the beanstalk, and Cinderella could not have gone to the ball without a pumpkin!
When gardening with children, try to think like they do. A salad garden consisting of greens is better identified as Mr. MacGregor’s garden. Here is a short list of other garden ideas for children.
FOR YOUNGER CHILDREN:
Cinderella Garden – pumpkins and lady slippers;
ABC Garden -anything from asters to zinnias;
Jack and the Beanstalk Garden- beans protected by Jack the Scarecrow;
Pizza Garden – a round garden consisting of tomatoes, peppers, onions, oregano, and marigolds
(to represent cheese);
Nose Garden – full of fragrant plants;
Rainbow Garden – arc-shaped garden with a “pot of gold” at one end.
FOR OLDER KIDS:
Historical Garden – choose a time in history and research plants for that period;
Native American Garden – corn, beans, squash;
Surprise and Identify Garden plant a variety of seeds, let kids identify plants.
When gardening with children make allowances for touching, smelling, premature harvesting, and
a few extra weeds.
Shellie Arnold, former Smith County Master Gardener
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service