There are many benefits to being outdoors. Being at one with nature is not only beneficial for physical health as it reduces blood pressure and stress, but it is also beneficial for our mental health too- as research shows that viewing scenes of nature reduces anxiety and increases pleasant feelings.
The misconception that gardening is tailored towards an adult activity ignores the notion that for children, time outdoors is incredibly good and will perhaps help them deal with stresses later on in life.
Gardens offer intrigue and excitement for children, as learning about new wildlife or plants is a great way to educate children while making it fun. Introducing children to the outdoors and trusting them to explore and play is a great way to incite decision-making skills, knowledge and good mental health.
Encouraging your children to get involved in gardening may prove difficult- especially in the age of accessible technology. Luckily, we’ve comprised out top 5 tips from we buy any home to make gardening a fun, family-friendly activity.
Tip 1: Growing Your Own Food:
Giving your children the option to choose is a great way to give them authority and freedom- ultimately creating more intrigue in an activity. Growing herbs and easy fruit and vegetables such as potatoes, strawberries or apples delegates a dedicated space that they can have ownership over. Encouraging them to plant the plant or sow the seeds themselves will involve them in the whole process.
Tip 2: Mix Arts & Crafts with Gardening:
This tip is essential if you live in a climate of unpredictable weather. As not every day will be suitable for outdoors, creating arts & crafts projects that will contribute to your garden space is not only an effective way to keep your children occupied, but maintain the focus on gardening. Creating plant labels, decorating watering cans and decorative stones are just a few suggestions to keep the gardening-buzz alive even on those rainy days.
Tip 3: Grow Carnivorous Plants:
The chances of your child being fascinated by carnivorous plants is highly likely. Investing in plants such as Venus fly traps and sundews which respond to physical touch ensure your children will have fun watching the plant come alive and hunt for food. Alongside the Venus fly traps and sundews, sarracenias are a great addition.
Tip 4: Wildlife in the Garden:
By planting certain flowers, small creatures will be attracted to the plant- therefore creating a miniature wildlife sanctuary for your children. For example, nasturtiums encourage caterpillars, which will eventually become butterflies. Enabling your children to watch this kind of process is not only exciting but also educational. For those who don’t have a fear of bugs, creating a ‘bug hotel’ by filling a pot with logs or garden waste will prolong the family activity of gardening- as your children will be encouraged to keep visiting and see what bugs have appeared.
Tip 5: Gardening Challenges:
Keep the spirit of competition alive! Setting harmless challenges for your children such as ‘who can grow the tallest sunflower?’ or ‘who can plant a pumpkin with the most seeds?’ is fun, keeping momentum and progress going.