Connecting kids with the great outdoors. Family blogger, Adventure inspiration, childhood cancer, nature, jobs and wildlife. Blogs written by Lucy
Patient Name: Caroline
Cancer Type: Rhabdomyosarcoma
Age when diagnosed: 7
Fun lockdown gardening activities
8th June 2020
I love gardening
I’m an outdoor Mum, lover of nature and the wild, and a parent of a childhood cancer survivor. I love being outdoors and have experienced the benefits of nature and the wild during serious illness. My garden is my sanctuary, a place not just for growing and working in but for family fun and relaxation. Right now, during the coronavirus pandemic, lots of kids are bored, fed up and struggling to find interest in anything. So I’ve put together some different, fun ideas to get children into the garden – not just to grow things but to simply enjoy nature and being outdoors. To inspire children to get into it more, we need to make the garden a fun space to be. With kids at home 24-7 during lockdown, us gardeners can’t be too precious about our prize plants! Here comes the fun…
1. Give children autonomy in the garden
It’s obvious really, but if we give kids their own plots, they’re more likely to identify their own gardening interests, which will be far more fun than feeling ‘forced’ to be out there by us boring parents. Caroline has three small gardening spaces of her own, two for flowers and one on the veg patch. Consequently, she’s growing nine different varieties of Dahlia this year (including a new variety called Tropical Breeze which we are being sent to trial by Thompson and Morgan), all chosen by herself as I’m not a fan of Dahlias!
2. Grow wildflowers to attract bugs, bees, butterflies & pollinators
This is a favourite children’s gardening project and one that’s excellent for the environment. There are lots of different ways to grow wildflowers at home:
3. Grow a meal-themed vegetable bed
Veg growing, whilst therapeutic, uplifting and rewarding for many of us, might initially seem boring for some children until they see and taste the results later in the year. Make sowing veg something really different with a themed plot such as a ‘Christmas Dinner Bed‘ (growing all the produce in time to harvest for Christmas dinner in December), or or a ‘Soup Bed‘ (with carrots & coriander or leeks & potatoes for a specific soup recipe) or buy a pre-sorted pack and grow your own pizza toppings!
For more isolation and lockdown activities, check out the Kids of the Wild’s gardening pages and read our why nature matters suggestions. Wild wishes for lockdown family fun in the garden!
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