growing vegetables with children

growing fruit/vegetables with children

growing fruit/vegetables with children

growing vegetables with children
It is almost 12 months since we first built and planted out our vegetable boxes and nine months since we planted our fruit trees (except the luscious mulberry tree that was already here when we purchased this house). Not everything has survived or been as fruitful as we would have liked but we have learnt a lot during this time. Mainly through trial and error. And the powers of the internet, especially when it comes to dealing with the pests that like to try and lay claim to our small seedlings.

There is something so rewarding that comes from eating food that you have grown yourself. And it is so important to children learning about food and their willingness to try new foods (you can read more about that in my post from two years ago when we planted vegies in our previous rental home here). Immy took such pleasure in harvesting our potato patch and loves to climb the ladder to pick the ripe, juicy black mulberries. She often eats vegetables straight from the plant and can identify a range of herbs, even in new contexts – in fact I think the lady watching and listening to us at the nursery last weekend was quite surprised at how much she knew.

So despite the trials, losses and frustrations we stick at it. After all, we are all learning together.

Do you grow fruits and/or vegetables in your backyard?


  1. What a great post to read and of course I couldn’t agree more with you. We grow a plethora of fruit, vegies and herbs here – lettuce, potatoes, peas (very popular), silverbeet, kale, parsley, rosemary, mint, strawberries (another popular one), oranges and nectarines. I love getting outside with my little one and so does she.

    1. We can’t wait for our orange, lemon, nectarine, peach and apple trees to fruit. It has been exciting to see them flowering these past few weeks 🙂

  2. Gardening with children is SO rewarding! I love food gardening and my 2 1/2 year old loves playing with me in the vegie garden. He will eat any vegetable if I tell him it was from our garden and he loves picking and eating raw, fresh food from our patch. His favourites at the moment are baby broccoli, snow peas and kale (not even I like raw kale but he eats it by the fist full!). All the best in the garden this spring!

    1. Wow, raw kale! Immy’s favourites are cherry tomatoes and corn (which she will eat straight from the plant, uncooked), and she will eat handfuls of parsley!

    2. Green Mama says:

      Thank goodness- the cherubs and I eat so much kale outside it barely makes it into the kitchen!

  3. penny @ Wildlife Fun 4 Kids says:

    We grow snow peas, strawberries, corn, lettuce and just for beauty, sunflowers. One day I hope to have an almost sustainable garden. One day.

    Miss Possum loves gardening. At three she already knows what a plant needs to grow. Nature is full of wonder.

    1. I keep meaning to grow sunflowers, Penny, but always forget. We must give them a go!

  4. The veg garden my son (now 3 and a half) and i began together has enabled him to sample many new vegetables and herbs that he would otherwise not try if offered at the table. This has included carrots, celery, parsley, snow peas, lettuce, and others. Participating in the whole process from the garden to the table has made him a very healthy eater. Most interesting has been my husband’s transformation from a meat and pasta man to a veggie eater as he can not refuse his son’s loving offers of vegetables he loves so much. I would highly recommend growing veggies to families with fussy eaters. Very rewarding indeed!

    1. I love that your son’s enthusiasm has also influenced your husband 🙂

  5. Jo @Countrylifeexperiment says:

    We already have a great vege garden, mainly because my husband is a horticulturalist and loves to grow things (I love to eat the things he grows). Our kids really love to grow veges and herbs with him, and always love harvesting food and then cooking it (potato pulling is one of the highlights of our year). I know that our interest in growing and cooking our own food has made our children better eaters.
    We currently have cabbages, radishes, broccoli, and lettuce. Tomatoes and potatoes are about to go into our new garden on the farm. We also have citrus trees, and a large herb garden. On our farm we also have a lot of fruit trees, and our kids always look forward to picking plums, figs, peaches, mulberries, and whatever other fruits have sprung up.

  6. Getting there… Hoping year 2 will be more successful. You’re definitely right about it being a learning experience!

    1. We learnt A LOT last spring/summer, Cath 🙂 Which has helped us so much in making our plans for this year.

  7. bubble936 says:

    We have sowed beans and zucchini… Now plants have started growinng…hopefully in next 2 months we will eat our own dwarf beans and zucchinis.

  8. This was the first year my son could help with our garden, he is an excellent waterer! This summer spent in the garden with my little one has been so rewarding, even if a few of our crops didn’t go as planned. I really want to try potatoes next spring!

  9. Sadly, were not growing many frits and vegetables at the moment. All i’m managing is sprouts on the kitchen bench (we eat mung bean sprouts like a vegetable), a big pot of rhubarb, and a container of mint. oh, and i’m currently raiding parsley from the temporarily empty house next door -I’m telling myself i’m not stealing, I’m simply pruning the plants for them 😉

    Once things get a little qieter around here I plan to focus on the garden for a while. I miss gardening in the afternoons with Little Eco. I think the garden is a nice clam and slow place to be in the afternoons after school, to touch base and chat about our days.

  10. Oh, mulberries. We had an enormous tree when I was growing up and I have such fond memories of climbing in it’s branches and picking the fruit. I also have memories of purple bird poo on our car as the birds loved the mulberries too! Your veggies are great – I love ours, but it is sorely neglected at the moment. Full of plants gone to seed.

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