Introducing Gardening to your Children

If you are an avid gardener, you probably would like to introduce your children to the joys of gardening. Gardening can teach your children many valuable skills such as patience, discipline, persistence, and a love for nature. Children will also be able to learn basic skills and the joys of manual labor when they help in the garden even as they enjoy seeing seeds sprout and buds flower. Another advantage of involving children in the garden is that even picky eaters are likely to eat cherry tomatoes and kale that they have helped to grow.

Keep the Age of the Child in Mind

When introducing children to gardening, keep the age of the child in mind. Children are impatient and expect quick results, so get them to plant quick-growing plants such as sunflowers and tomatoes. Similarly, sunflowers have large seeds that are easier for very young children to handle.

Hand over ownership

One of the best ways to encourage your children to take an interest in gardening is to give them individual plots. The ownership of the plot will inculcate a better sense of responsibility and ensure that they remember to water their garden and weed it. The size of the plot should depend on the age of the child. You could start off very young children with a container garden that they can easily water.

Locate the child’s plot in a sunny spot that has easy access to a water source. Depending on the age of the child, you can help by weeding, removing bugs, or watering.

Gradually Involve them in All Gardening Activities

While very young children are likely to only be interested in some aspects of gardening such as planting the seeds or watering, you can gradually involve the child in all gardening activities. Teach your child how to compost organic material, weed, remove pests, and harvest. As the child grows older, you can ask them to take part in mulching and fertilizing, pruning, and harvesting. You can also increase the area of the garden your child manages and let them choose which plants to plant each year.

Safety Measures

When introducing gardening to your children, you need to ensure that adequate steps are in place to ensure their safety. First, you need to make sure that the plot allotted to your child is close to the house and visible from the home for better monitoring. While even very young children should be given proper gardening tools, these should be the right size for them to use safely. Some garden tools and implements should only be used by children under supervision.

Apart from this, you also need to make sure that your children are not exposed to chemical fertilizers and pesticides. This is best achieved by keeping your entire garden organic. If that is not possible, keep pesticides out of the reach of children and explain that certain products are not to be used by them.

Planning Garden Beds

When planning garden beds for children, make sure that they are not very wide so that children can reach the center of the beds with ease. This means that the garden beds should not be more than four feet in width. Additionally, you need to leave adequate space between the beds for children to move around with ease. With very small children who may not be the most coordinated or have the attention to detail that adults have, you need to leave around two feet between the beds to ensure that they do not trample on the plants.

Using the Garden as a Teaching Tool

To be most effective, the garden should be used as a fun teaching tool. This can be done by letting children get muddy and dirty as they explore all aspects of the garden. Introduce your children not only to the plants in the garden, but the insects, small animals, and birds that are part of it. Installing a bird feeder and bird bath can help add color and interest to the garden. Help your children identify the birds and insects in your garden even as you teach them the names of the various plants.

Be Flexible

In order to ensure that your children enjoy gardening and spending time outdoors, you need to be flexible. Let the children choose what they want to plant and allow them to make a few mistakes. This is how children learn – they learn from their mistakes. No different than adults really though.

Very young children are likely to pull up plants along with the weeds, trample on seedlings, overwater the plant beds, and so on. While this can result in a less-than-perfect garden, your children are likely to find the process enjoyable and take pride in productive work. While children need to be supervised to ensure that they do not injure themselves when using garden implements, they should be allowed to experiment and make mistakes so that they learn to appreciate the joys of gardening as well as other life lessons.

And certainly, they can enjoy some of the fruits of their labor as well.

Introducing Gardening to Your Children

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The consideration and exercise of these safety tips when building a shed should be a part of the planning and building of a garden shed. People tend to take safety for granted at times. Imagine the pain that you go through and the time you lose to nurse a painful black thumb nail or cut finger, remove a sliver from your hand, or any other injury that may happen while you are working on your structure. It pays to be careful. Being careful can save you time and discomfort! And do not forget it can save you money too! There are safety tips that you should pay attention to so that you can lower the chances of these injuries. Building a shed for your garden should be an experience that you enjoy and have fun with, not a painful one. 5 Safety Tips When Building a Shed Here are five safety tips that you should follow to prevent accidents from happening and injuring yourself:
  1. Wear protective gear – Whether your shed-building project is big or small, it is important to make sure that you always wear proper protective gear at all times. This will ensure that you do not injure yourself while you are working. You should make sure that you always wear safety glasses, hard hat, protective clothing, and leather gloves when you are building your garden shed.
  2. Handle materials properly – It is important that you take proper care when you are handling materials to avoid injuring yourself and others who may be working around you. You can lower the chances of getting slivers or cuts in your hands or fingers by wearing suitable leather work gloves. You can also prevent bruises and cuts to your arms and legs by wearing protective clothing. When you need to move heavy sheeting or lumber, be sure to ask for help so that you avoid injuring your back.
  3. Clear the working area – It is important to keep your work area as clear as possible so that you do not stumble and fall or trip on something and hurt yourself. You should make it a point to organize your sheeting, lumber, and other supplies in neat piles. This will ensure that you can easily and safely pick up what you need without the material falling all over the place and avoid injuring yourself.
Safety Tips when Building a Shed
  1. Use hand tools with caution – Hand tools, especially those for sawing and nailing, can be dangerous when they are not used properly. It is important that you always handle them with caution. When you are sawing materials, make sure that they have proper support and keep your fingers away from the cutting edge. Always use a proper hammer, usually a claw hammer, when you have nailing jobs. Also, be sure to be careful when holding a nail. You could hit the wrong nail and end up with an excruciating black thumb nail. You can prevent these kinds of injuries with a little care and practice. There are tools that may be easier to hold without gloves for a better grip, so you will need to take extra precautions to avoid getting injured.
  2. Follow safety rules when using power tools – When you are using power tools, always make sure that you follow safety rules and the manufacturer’s instructions. Also, make sure that your full attention is on the job at hand. As mentioned earlier, make sure that sheeting and lumber are well supported and hold them in a solid position before you turn on your power tool. Make sure that you are always aware of what could happen if chips fly or the piece of wood slips, or if your fingers get too close to the cutting line. Remember that you need to be in control at all times and keep your focus on the task to avoid sloppy work and possibly injuring yourself. You can also damage a power tool if you are not careful of course that is better than hurting yourself.
DIY projects can be fun and they are a salient way to make good use of your time and skills. Instead of hiring a professional to build a garden shed or any other structure for your outdoors, you can do it yourself, provided you use the right tools and materials. A marvelous advantage to building a shed yourself is that you can save a lot of money. Home improvement can be expensive and when you do the job yourself, you can make sure that you stick to a budget and save some cash. Safety Tips when Building a Shed Whether you are building a shed or a pergola, you need to make sure that you take safety precautions at all times. DIY projects involve different types of materials and tools, some of which can be dangerous if you do not exercise caution. By following important safety rules and tips, you can avoid injuries to yourself as well as others who are around you. And your own pets! As you know, some injuries can be serious and that is why you need to be extremely careful when taking on a DIY project. No one ever had fun in an emergency room! So if you are building a shed, always make sure to make safety a priority to avoid or mitigate the chances of getting injured.

Safety Tips when Building a Shed

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Although you may have your own thoughts and preferences about what vegetables would be best to grow in your garden, our backyard garden ideas will help you get the best return for your effort.

You need to make sure that you have enough space in your backyard garden. If space is limited for a vegetable garden in your backyard, you should reconsider which crops are best and easy to grow. You should also know which seeds are expensive to buy. Here is a look at some of the best vegetables to plant in your backyard.

Peas: When spring comes, one of the first crops you should plant is peas. Also, it is one of the first you can harvest with a short season of about 60 days. For this crop, you need well-drained soil and large planters and raised garden beds as they do well in these. You should also have a medium-height trellis of about 3 to 4’ for the peas to climb.

You can sow them directly into the ground from seeds and make sure that you sow them thickly. But you can also sprout peas indoors, which helps in ensuring success when conditions are damp. You can extend the harvest by staggering the planting time every 2 weeks. Peas are a poignant choice as they benefit your soil’s health by fixing nitrogen.

Peas are also delicious with rice. Peas are healthy and scrumptious. There are not too many meals better than a meal with rice, peas and some beef, that is a fantastic and healthy meal.

Broccoli: A member of the Brassica family, broccoli is a highly valued vegetable due to its nutritional value as well as long productivity period. It is also quite expensive to buy. Over winter, broccoli can provide new shoots with smaller-sized clusters of the veggie which is marvelous to have during the cold season. You should sow broccoli into the ground directly from the seed, or you could also sow them in small starter pots, depending on the space you have.

Experts recommend starter pots as they make it easier to protect the seedlings from slugs and birds and you can move them indoors in harsh weather conditions until they become strong enough to be transplanted in the outdoors. You should put brassica crops on different beds every year, meaning you should rotate them each year.

With mayonnaise, broccoli is spectacular.

Lettuce: When it comes to lettuce, there are a number of varieties available. You can plant large, head-forming lettuces like butterhead and iceberg single file in rows, which is marvelous and makes mulching easy. On the other hand, you can plant smaller leafy varieties thickly in 24” wide swaths for a great self-mulching effect. You can also intersperse small lettuce transplants throughout the garden wherever you have space.

‘Bolting’ is a common problem when it comes to lettuce and it takes place when the plant goes to seed and the leaves cease to grow. Bolting occurs when temperatures are consistently too high. If you want to stop bolting from happening in your garden, make sure that you plant your lettuce in a shaded area or plant them next to other crops that can provide shade, such as tomatoes.

Your salads will be scrumptious with your own lettuce. On top of this, your burgers and ham sandwiches and so on will be outstanding with your own lettuce as well.

Tomatoes: Everyone loves tomatoes and there are quite a few varieties that you can choose from such as paste, table, and cherry tomatoes. You will need to provide tall stakes which you should set when you transplant the plant. You can also use small wire cages.

No matter which one you use, you will need to tie the plants gently to the stakes as they slowly grow. If you want your tomatoes to do well, you should keep their leaves dry. You can construct a simple shelter to cover the plants with clear plastic sheeting – you can leave the sides open. You can keep rain from wetting the lower leaves with a layer of mulch. This will also help the upper soil retain moisture.

That turkey sandwich never tasted so good with your own tomatoes making every bite that much more fresh and tantalizing.

Peppers: Peppers are easy to grow and commonly planted early in small pots. You can then transplant them when the weather becomes warm enough outside. If you see any small peppers forming on transplants, make sure that you pick them off or it will stunt the plant growth.

You should also pick the green peppers when they reach size – this will help in stimulating new fruiting and increasing each plant’s yield. Leave a plant or two unpicked if you want the peppers to become sweet and turn yellow or red in color – however, keep in mind that fewer peppers will be produced in such plants.

You can do so much with the pepper it is just incredible. The only limit really is your imagination.

If you want to grow vegetables that give you a hefty yield as a reward for your efforts, the five mentioned above are some of the best choices. Spring is just around the corner and it is time to start thinking about what will go into your backyard veggie garden.

There is nothing like knowing that you are eating the freshest produce that you have planted and grown yourself. With these plants, you can have a fantastic harvest and have the healthiest foods in your kitchen every day. Check out more vegetables that you can grow in your backyard and start planting ASAP!

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Whether you are a new gardener or have been gardening for some time now, there are ways by which you can increase your vegetable garden yield. These steps can help you get more vegetables out of your garden this year.

Improve Soil Quality

The most important way in which you can increase your vegetable garden yield is by improving soil quality. This can be done without too much work by covering the vegetable garden plot with compost and hay at the start of winter. By the time you are ready to plant, the compost would have been worked into the soil by the snow and rain as well as insects, ensuring nutrient-rich soil for your vegetables with less effort on your part. The deeper the layer of composted soil, the healthier the plants.

Use Raised Beds

Another way of increasing vegetable garden yields is to use raised beds. This has multiple advantages. The raised beds reduce the amount of space taken by paths. Moreover, the soil can be made more nutrient rich much more easily as compost can be worked into it. Both these benefits will increase the yield of the vegetable garden.

Round Out the Beds

When you use raised beds, you can also round them out. This increases the surface area available for plants. When multiplied by the length of the beds, the amount of additional space is significant enough to increase yields. Plant greens and similar plants at the edges of the raised beds, making them easier to harvest as well.

Stagger the Plants

Another way of saving space when planting vegetables is to stagger them. Instead of planting them in straight rows, plant them in triangles. This will enable you to plant more in the same area while still ensuring that all of the plants get sufficient sunlight, water, and nutrients to grow to their maximum potential.

Use Vertical Space

Fix vertical trellises and poles at the sides of the raised beds and train vines of beans, melons, and similar plants on them. This will help save garden space and ensure healthier plants as well. The vertical plants will escape fungal diseases. Harvesting is also easier as you will be able to spot the crop of vegetables much more easily.


You should also interplant or mix up the plants in your vegetable garden to maximize the use of available space. Compatible plants can be grown together to ensure that weeds are kept out and all available space is used by vegetable plants. For instance, if you plant corn, pole beans, and squash together, the corn stalks will support the pole beans and the squash will grow on the ground in the space between them. You can also grow tomatoes, onions, and basil together or plant carrots, radishes, and onions together.

Plant Successive Crops

Another way to make the most out of your vegetable garden is to plant and harvest successive crops. If you select quick growing plants, the first lot can be harvested before a second crop is grown in the same area. Before planting the second crop, ensure that you add more compost to the soil to make it nutrient rich.

Stretch the Growing Season

In order to grow two crops, you will also need to stretch the growing season. This can be done by growing seedlings in your greenhouse or garden shed before the start of spring. Once the weather becomes warmer, transplant the seedlings to the garden. The head start will enable them to mature faster, leaving you with the time to start a second crop. This too should be started in the greenhouse as the first crop starts to mature.

Move Plants Indoors

Toward the end of the growing season, you can prolong the growth period, by simply moving some of the plants indoors to your garden shed or greenhouse. For instance, if the tomatoes have yet to ripen and the weather turns chilly, all you need to do is cut the vines and hang them indoors in a warm area. The tomatoes will continue to mature and ripen, ensuring a bountiful harvest.

Enjoy Your Increased Vegetable Garden Yield

If you love gardening and want to increase the supply of fresh vegetables that your garden yields, you do not have to look for more ground space. Instead, simply improve soil quality, plant quick maturing plants, space the plants properly, and transplant seedlings.

Each of these steps will help increase your vegetable garden yield. Additionally, the labor and materials used is not significantly higher. By spacing the plants closer together, you will be able to spend less time watering, weeding, and harvesting, maximizing the productivity of your garden with ease.

Select the plants that are best suited for the soil and climate around your home, and reduce the amount of labor you need to put into it.

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Vegetable garden If you have plenty of open space around your home and want to spend a productive time outdoors, you should start a vegetable garden. This will enable you to enjoy growing your own vegetables and obtain fresh produce for your kitchen, canning purposes, or just by giving them away. The first steps when planning a vegetable garden are locating the site and determining its size. You should start small and expand your vegetable garden over the years.

How to Plan a Vegetable Garden

Size and Location

Choose a level plot about 16 feet by 10 feet in a sunny spot. When deciding on the size of your vegetable plot, error on the side of caution and fix on a smaller plot first. Once you are sure you can manage this and also make use of the vegetables you grow, you can expand it in the future. Vegetables require between six and eight hours of sunlight a day, so make sure the plot you select receives plenty of sun and is away from trees that can cast a shadow or take away vital nutrients. If possible, select a plot that is close to the house since this will discourage garden pests and wild animals.

Soil Quality

Vegetables require plenty of nutrients, so the soil should be loamy. Before you begin planting, get the soil tested and add mulch, compost, and other fertilizers as recommended.

Picking the Plants

Once you have decided on the plot you need to pick the plants you want to grow. Consult with the local horticultural organization about the best vegetables to grow in your area. Also factor in your tastes and requirements and only plant those vegetables that you will use. Some of the easiest plants to grow for beginners are tomatoes, zucchini, peppers, bush beans, cabbage, carrot, beets, lettuce, radishes, and chard. You should also plant marigolds around the vegetable garden to keep out rabbits.

Vegetable Rows

A garden that is 16 feet by 10 feet can accommodate 11 rows each of 10 feet in length. This spacing of the rows will give you sufficient space to walk between them to water, weed, and harvest the crop of vegetables.

Raised Beds or Tilling

Another decision that you need to make regarding the vegetable garden is whether you will be tilling the soil or planting on raised beds. Raised beds are recommended if the soil is of poor quality or if you have a bad back.

Building a Raised Bed

You can build a raised bed using four feet width lumber. The four feet width of the beds is ideal for growing most vegetables and will provide you with space to walk between the raised beds to tend to your plants, whether you are watering them or weeding the beds. When selecting lumber opt for natural woods with oil such as cedar that will not decompose easily even when exposed to soil and moisture. This will ensure that the raised beds last for around ten years. Alternatively, you can use pressure treated wood as long as it is not CCA pressure treated. When selecting lumber for your raised vegetable bed, ensure that it will not leach harmful chemicals into the soil. It is also possible to build raised vegetable beds using concrete blocks. However, this will likely increase the pH of the soil over time and you will need to treat the soil to combat this. When building a raised bed, the depth should be at least 6 inches while 12 inches is ideal. Drive wooden stakes into the ground to support the raised beds. The stakes should be spaced all along the length of the raised bed. Next, the wooden beds can be fixed to the stakes using galvanized screws and the beds filled with a mix of soil, compost, and manure.


While all vegetable gardens require at least an inch of water a week, raised beds might need to be watered more frequently, especially in summer. To prevent the soil from drying in summer, it can be covered with mulch, hay, or other organic material. It is possible to start a vegetable garden even if you only have a small open space, as long as the plot receives plenty of sunlight. All other aspects of the garden can be controlled. For instance, after getting the soil tested, you can add compost, manure, and fertilizer to improve its quality, build a raised bed, and increase the frequency of water if needed.

Gardening Tools

Once you have decided to start a vegetable garden, you should order the seeds or plants you require as well as a set of gardening tools. The basic gardening tools you need include a garden fork, spade, watering hose, hand weeder, hoe, and bucket or wheel barrow. Just as you need to order quality seeds, consider paying extra for high quality gardening tools since they will last longer―certainly if you take care of them. For instance, leaving tools in the weather, in the sun all day, is not conducive to long tool life.
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raised garden bed If you are planning to add a flower or vegetable garden to your yard, you should consider raised garden beds. A raised garden bed simply consists of a box made of wood, bricks, or blocks which has soil to elevate the planting bed’s level above the surrounding ground. With raised beds, you get a simple and effective way to create a garden that is healthy and productive by positively manipulating the growing environment. And the best part is that you can create the ideal planting conditions for soil structure and drainage, no matter how bad the ground you are starting with is.

Benefits of a Raised Garden Bed

When it comes to the size and shape of raised planting beds, there are many different options to choose from. These include prefabricated frame kits that are great as they are really simple to assemble. No matter what type you choose, there are distinct advantages that raised beds offer that traditional ground-level garden beds do not, including:
  • Better Soil: With raised garden beds, you gain greater control over soil quality. You can even add new soil or incorporate organic matter that is more nutritious to make sure that the growing conditions improve for your plants. With raised planting beds, pH balance, depth, richness and texture are all right at the tip of your fingers.
  • Increased Yields: With raised planting beds, you can get double the yield of conventional row gardens. By planning the beds so that you can reach in from all sides, the need to plant in rows gets eliminated, making it easier for you to maintain it as well. Also, when you space plants in a matrix instead of rows, you can get more plants into the bed and they will thrive in the rich soil and you will find a significant harvest increase per square foot.
  • Lower Maintenance: Because you can make better use of the space in your raised garden beds, it means less room for weeds, less waste, less water, and less stress. You will still have to water and take care of your plant, but you can target your efforts on places where it counts the most. You get easy accessibility as well, which means that you do not have to spend too much time and energy on maintaining your plants.
  • Improved Drainage: Water gets drained away faster when you have raised planting beds. This is great for you when spring rains come. When the drainage is good, problems like fungus, rot, and diseases are eliminated. You need to keep in mind that during midsummer, you will need to water your plants more often.
  • Water-Saving System: You get a small and organized space with raised garden beds, making it ideal for you to incorporate a water-saving irrigation system. You can use systems such as a soaker hose or drip irrigation to water your plants to keep them thriving and alive. Saving water has many advantages and with raised beds, you can do your part for the environment.
  • Longer Growing Season: Raised planting beds warm up a lot faster than the surrounding soil during spring. This means that you can start planting a little earlier than you would with traditional planting rows. Likewise, they tend to stay warmer and produce for a longer period of time in the fall.
  • Improved Pest Control: Although it is quite tough to make any garden pest-proof, there are a few advantages that raised garden beds offer. You can easily protect them against burrowing critters by adding a lining to the bottom with hardware cloth and fencing the sides. Slugs and other creepy crawlies will be discouraged as they have to climb up the sides. You can keep the birds away by adding a simple frame on top of the raised bed so that bird netting can be easily draped over it.
  • Easy to Use: Raised garden beds give you fantastic ease of use, which is why they are a better option than conventional rows. They can be built as high as you need, so that you are comfortable while working on them. Benches can also be incorporated around the edges to keep your knees from getting hurt.
  • Neater to Look At: Raised planting beds have nice clean lines that give them a neater appearance. You can plant lawn grass in between raised beds or add stone pathways that you can walk around on. You do not have to worry about messy mud and you can have a garden with neat order that looks marvelous.
As you can see, raised garden beds are much better than traditional garden rows as they offer many unique advantages. You can be as creative as you like and add elements to make your garden look even better. With raised beds, you can have a beautiful garden that is filled with bright flowers or vegetables. No matter what you plant, with raised garden beds, you can have a garden that you are always proud of. It is something to think about!
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