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Growing Fun, Healthy Habits: Vegetable Gardening With Kids

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If they grow them, kids are more likely to eat them – vegetables that is.

Start with a family planning session.  Get everyone involved drawing pictures of their favorite vegetables and the garden they want to grow.

Plant lettuce, radishes or other fast growing vegetables that give quick results and keep everyone interested in the garden.

Try planting a variety of fun radishes and colorful carrots in containers.  It’s easy for them to plant, maintain and observe container gardens.

Include color in the garden.  The kids, parents, and grandparents may like planting yellow, orange and lilac colored peppers.    And purple beans are fun to watch turn green when cooked.  Plus include some kids favorites like yellow plum tomato, a fun Fairy Tale eggplant, early ripening 4th of July tomato and something new – maybe it’s cauliflower this year.

Add some original artwork as you label the plants in the garden to keep the fun and excitement growing throughout the season.

A bit more information:  Help keep little feet out of the plants and on the pathways with these simple techniques.  Create small raised planting areas within the garden.  Simply rake some of the soil from the pathways into the spaces to be planted.  The raised area is a good reminder that feet stay on the lower pathway and out of the elevated planting bed.  Mulch pathways with shredded leaves, straw or other materials to show children where to walk.  Use a different mulch for planting beds.  Or surround planting beds or mark planting rows with colorful string.  And if a few plants get trampled, that’s ok.  It is all part of the fun and learning that happens in a garden.