Having 2 boys I learnt early on that getting dirty= FUN & HAPPINESS!!
They loved jumping in muddy puddles and driving their trucks in the dirt and playing in the sand- the messier it was the better. So, when they decided that eating vegetables wasn’t their favourite meal anymore I thought maybe if they helped to grow the vegetables and had fun getting messy they’d be more inclined to enjoy eating their ‘produce’ and so our veggie garden activities began!
Making a veggie garden is a wonderful sensory, messy play activity for children. They get to see how vegetables grow by looking after them and watering them, and they can enjoy picking the vegetables and eating them when they are ready. Children of all ages can get involved and you can make it a family affair…quality family time in the mud!!
This is our most recent veggie garden that we created:
First we chose an area to section off. We then put down potting soil and leveled it. Children love filling up buckets and feeling the soil and then raking it flat. Toddlers will need to use small buckets & spades and mini rakes.
The newly laid soil needs to then be watered and raked again. You can use watering cans or hosepipes (sprayers) depending on how long you want the process to take!!
Using your hands/ fingers make small holes in the soil. Take the seedlings out of the containers and put them gently into the holes. Push the soil over the roots to secure them in place, toddlers may need some help with this so that they don’t squash the seedlings. You can also use seeds that toddlers sprinkle into the holes but they usually take a bit longer to grow so they don’t see the “results” of their efforts as quickly.
What a lot of fun and dirt!!
Now to wait for them to grow… so you can pick and eat. Don’t forget to keep watering them!!
Contributed by Margaret Hardie of Clamber Club