Last weekend I sat down with Sam and Lily and a seed catalogue. It was the nicest hour of my whole week.
I’ve been doing my own planning for this year’s garden and allotment this week, so it was a great opportunity to get the kids thinking about what they want to grow in their own little plots down at the allotment (see my Family Allotment Adventure post for more about what they got up to last year).
I think it’s important to involve your kids in every stage of gardening, it helps them understand the significance of whatever they’re doing in the grand scheme of things, and getting them to make their own plans also gives them a big sense of responsibility. In our experience it also makes them more inclined to look after their plot; that emotional investment is started early, before even a seed in sown, and this seems to work its magic.
So… we browsed, we chatted, we drew, we made lists, I drank tea. The result was two wish lists and one rather fabulous drawing of Sam’s plot, I particularly love the bees!
Sam decided to choose plants that would be good for pollinating insects; last year we talked a lot about how important it is to look after pollinators in your garden if you want your plants to thrive, this has obviously stayed in his mind. We chatted about choosing plants that are suited to the conditions on his plot (full sun) and also about choosing plants that grow to a variety of heights to give it a bit of structure. Here are his choices.
Teddy Bear Sunflowers – “I grew these last year and they were so cool.”
Aquilegia McKanas Giant – “The flowers are fab colours.”
Candytuft – “It looks frothy.”
Coleus – “The patterns on the leaves are awesome!”
Ipomoea – “Blue is my favourite colour, I can grow this up a cane wigwam.”
Nigella – “We grew this at home last year and I loved the feathery leaves.”
Lily was very clear on what she wanted to grow in the way that only a 3 year old can be; for her it was all about flower appeal and familliarity. Here are her choices.
Cosmos & Teddy Bear Sunflowers – “I remember stroking them!” (she grew these on her plot last year)
Sweet peas – “I’ve already planted them.” – she did, back in November, good memory!
Pansy – “The patterns look like butterfly wings.”
Poached Egg Plant – “Egg flowers! I love dippy egg.”
This was such a lovely thing to do with my kids; I got a real insight into what gardening means to them and what they have learned so far from our family hobby. Their enthusiasm and have-a-go approach reminded me why this gardening lark is so well-suited to children. I can’t wait to get planting with them.
Joining in as always with Annie’s #HDYGG series at Mammasaurus