Kids can really quickly learn to love gardening when young. Many will fall out of love in their teens but come back to it with renewed enthusiasm later. If they already had a grounding in gardening as a child they will remember much of what they learned.
Start them young with ultra fast indoor, windowstill crops such as cress seed on wet tissue. Sow the seeds on Monday and you kids can watch thyem germinate and grow, understand the way roots develop and have a tasty egg and cress sandwhich for lunch by friday.
Give the kids a patch of earth to play with. Let a part of the garden be ‘theirs’. Ownership of grownup areas is a huge motivator.
Give them strawberries to plant. Strawberries are hardy, last years and when looked after produce bumper crops. A great lesson in the relationship between effort and success.
Plant heather and other bee friendly species. Kids should learn as early as possible about the importance of the bees. They provide about 1/3 of the food we eat.
If you have apple trees, ‘give’ a tree to a child. My dad gave me a tree for my 5th birthday. All the apples that fell from it were mine. It was a wonderful gift that I treasured more than my bicycle, computer and all my toys (except teddy who was still my favourite). In the winter dad showed me how to prune the tree and I am still pruning apple trees to his method 35 years later.
Give them seeds and let them compete to grow the tallest sunflower. There is something magical about a 3 foot tall kid growing a 12 foot sunflower.
The following veg are fun becuse the look impressive or taste great: