Gardening for Children

It’s never too early for children to start learning about agriculture. Use the summer months to show children where their fruits and vegetables come from. SNAP buys seeds and food producing plants! Whether you’re in a single-family home or an apartment, growing plants can be done in a yard, a small pot or a hanging planter.

Teaching children about gardening can lead to lifelong healthy eating habits, as well as other benefits including:

  • Science and nature when exploring plants.
  • Math skills when counting scoops of dirt.
  • Exposure to reading, writing, and drawing through stories, books, and activities, such as creating a garden journal.
  • Social skills by working with other children and adults.
  • Experiencing the taste of fully ripe produce.
  • Experience the satisfaction of growing their favorite fruit or vegetable.

(Adapted from Penn State Extension)

Check out how easy it is to get your child involved in gardening. You will need:

  • Pot/container (if you don’t have access to a plot in a yard)
  • Seeds of your choice
  • The proper soil
  • Watering canister or water hose

While SNAP will pay for the seeds or seedling plants, you will need to purchase the other items with non-SNAP funds.  Check your local dollar or other discount store for pots, containers, and watering cans.  You might even find bags of plant soil.

Produce is best grown according to season. Use the North Carolina In-Season chart for the best results with growing your desired fruit or vegetable and remember that seeds can be started in-doors just in advance of the growing season.  Read the seed packet for instructions.

That’s it.  You’re ready! So, get started as soon as you can so you can enjoy those delicious fruits and vegetables!

Depending upon the age of the child, adult supervision and assistance may be necessary.

If using pots:

Before or after your plants have been potted, get creative and decorate the pots! Use items sitting around the home or purchase paint.

This blog used information from:

  1. Penn State Extension