Get gardening with the kids these school holidays
With school holidays nearly here and the weather improving, encourage the kids outdoors this spring with a few gardening activities at home.
Gardening will teach them simple maths and science and promote their creativity, as well as being a place for them to relax and enjoy the outdoor environment.
Whether you have a large garden area or simply a courtyard with pots, there’s still plenty of activities you can get under way with your child.
Plant out a vegetable garden
Planting vegetables is a great way for kids to enjoy the fruits of their labour through the growing months. Check out a gardening guide or check with your local nursery which plants are best started off at this time of year. Some plants such as tomatoes and lettuces can even be grown in pots or planter boxes.
Zucchinis and pumpkins are easy to grow from seed and grow quickly in the warmer weather.
Kids will love the vibrant colours and scents they will get from planting out their own flowers. Try planting some colourful sunflowers from seed, or create a flower basket or pot. Line a flower basket with some hay or sphagnum moss, add potting mix and a variety of different coloured flowering annuals.
Create a rock garden
Get your kids involved with making a fun rock garden at home. Collect some interesting rocks and stones, add some mosaics (or get the kids to make their own). Add some hardy native plants such as flaxes, kowhais, hebes and pittosporums. They could even add some driftwood pieces for added effect.
Grow some herbs
Whether you want to create a dedicated herb garden or just grow some from pots, growing herbs is easy and smells divine. Growing from seed will take a little longer for some herbs, but will be very gratifying for children when they see the results.
Some herbs will even grow easily from cuttings such as rosemary, mint or lemon balm.
There are also plenty of fully grown plants available from garden centres, supermarkets and market day stalls. Chives, parsley, mint, rosemary and thyme are easy to grow and look after.