Growing up, I remember going to visit my grandparents and finding Grandpa out in the garden, happily munching on a tomato he just picked. I was so amazed that food was waiting in the backyard! Fast-forward a couple of decades, my dad built raised beds in my backyard and our family’s veggie garden took root.
Gardening, for us, is something that can allow us to grow together as a family, or give us some solitude. Both our girls were in the garden, snuggled in carriers while I harvested when there were days old. As they get older, they get more responsibilities (and more fun).
While we generally buy small plants at the beginning of the season, planting seeds is a fun activity for kids as young as 2 or so. Family trips to the Farmers’ Market to find the perfect plants are also a fun way to spend a Saturday morning. When the ground thaws, everyone can get in on helping to ready the beds. We stick to all organic fertilizers, including making our own compost through vermiculture, so the girls can safely get into the dirt.
Planting has been the highlight of our 4-year-old’s season, but that’s about to change as the tomatoes ripen. My husband can often be found weeding and tending to the beds.
Our not yet 1-year-old enjoys the spritzing from the hose as the 4-year-old waters. My favorite is heading back out after a day of work, with a cold drink in hand, picking food that will become dinner.
Whether you have acres of land to create a large garden, or live in the city with a balcony just big enough for a couple of pots, growing things is possible in most settings. Come winter, we move our herb garden inside so we can have fresh basil year-round. Our girls are learning many lessons courtesy of the garden. From talking about the water cycle and pollinators to learning how to make a killer red sauce and healthy eating. Gardening is one of the ways our family spends more time together. We are doing way more than growing a bit of produce.
Hey, I’m Meaghan and I live in Minnesota with my husband, our 2 daughters, and our 2 dogs. I describe myself as semi-crunchy and have developed a passion for trying out different products, especially all things cloth diapering and breastfeeding. Check out my blog for product reviews, more of my sage advice, and also some recipes (seriously, try the banana bread!). You can also follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Facebook page.