Fresh produce is delicious. There is nothing better than tasting a tomato from the garden, still warmly kissed by the sun.
I am a beginner gardener, and every year I learn something new. I genuinely enjoy watching the seeds sprout and flower, anticipating the delicious harvest yet to come. My garden seems to get bigger each season as I experiment with planting more types of vegetables.
of vegetables...ever since I was a child, the vegetable was my enemy!
My mother loved them and could not understand my constant refusal. Her
frustration grew as I started gaining weight, and she struggled to make
them part of a healthy diet for me.
So what can we do to encourage a child who is a picky eater and runs the other way when offered vegetables?
One solution is to try letting them grow some from seed. By instructing your child on how to germinate seeds, they will be able to watch how the plants come into existence and have a sense of pride in eating what they have grown.
I grew up in the country and loved to ride my bike, swim, play baseball and tennis, but gardening was never something I enjoyed for some reason. Could it be that I always killed everything I tried to grow...or my lack of patience? Maybe a little bit of both?
While waiting for their flowers and vegetables to grow, kids will need to learn patience. Gardening is often a slow process, but it is so exciting when the seedlings show themselves and begin to sprout! Harvesting their fresh produce will be a source of pride.
While they are learning about gardening, the kids will experience how to take care of their seeds to make sure they become healthy plants. It is a great way to teach kids about responsibility.
Live in a small apartment or condo? Or even a small yard with a house? Take a look at our Balcony Gardening page for some great tips and ideas
Bonding With Family
I have heard many stories from people about how gardening has created a close bond with their family members. New traditions can be made and carried on into adulthood.
It can be fun creating the garden; choosing what type of flowers or vegetables you want to grow, and where to plant them. Or perhaps you will have a balcony garden or a windowsill.
Families can then create healthy meals together using the vegetables they have harvested.
Creating Healthy Habits
Gardening encourages healthy eating by teaching children about nutrition and allowing them to make a connection between growing food and proper diet. A child who takes pride in growing their food is more open to trying and liking them. Many healthy habits that begin in childhood will be cultivated and learned for a lifetime.