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How Does Your Garden Grow?

We present a bouquet of gardeners' tips and tricks to get everyone in your family into the dirt.
 

Learning Benefits

Whether you have a big backyard or a few potted plants sitting on your porch, your family can reap the rewards of gardening. Young ones can learn about the life cycle of plants and practice the responsibility of tending to “crops,” while everyone can take pride in the bloom of flowers and bounty of fresh vegetables.

Here are seven suggested additions to your garden that particularly appeal to children.

  1. Wind Chimes: Sweet music launched on a breeze brings peacefulness to your garden. Want to add some whimsy? Help your child make her own wind chimes out of old forks and spoons. To find out how, click here.
     
  2. Butterflies: Their delicate beauty is enchanting. Your child can attract butterflies with a window box planted with marigolds, zinnias, or petunias. Add a shallow bowl of fresh water and some flat stones to give them a place to rest. 
     
  3. Herbs: Kids love to rub herbs between their fingers and sniff the aroma. These easy-grow plants usually do well on your kitchen windowsill, too. Try mint, lavender, or rosemary.
     
  4. Birdhouse: Hang a home for your flying friends and stock it with seeds. Your family will have a riot of color and sound.
     
  5. Flowers: They’re not only gorgeous, they’re fun, too. Lamb’s Ears have a unique “fuzzy” texture. Snapdragons have little “jaws” kids can snap shut. Try some night bloomers, too. Depending on where you live, an evening primrose may do the trick.
     
  6. Planters: Go on a family scavenger hunt to find creative planters. Watering can? Dad’s old work boot? An unused teakettle? Be sure to poke a hole in the bottom for drainage. 
     
  7. Scarecrow: Put your kids in charge of picking out this guy’s wardrobe — to start, they might dig into old Halloween costumes.

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