A green thumb family

Whether you live in an apartment, home with just a small verandah or a large bungalow, families can have fun growing green things together – Cherubina

gardening

Gardening is a wonderful hobby to bond families. It’s fun to watch the wonder on your children’s faces as plants sprout flowers and vegetables. Whether you live in an apartment, home with just a small verandah or a large bungalow, you can have fun growing green things together.

It doesn’t take much to get started, even if you are new to gardening!

Materials

• Some pots or old shoeboxes lined with plastic
• A few pebbles
• Soil
• Seeds
• Water

If you are using an old shoebox, remember to seal the inside of your box with plastic lining of plastic shopping bags. Cut little holes in the plastic for water to drain out. Ask children to decorate pots/shoeboxes with drawings using acrylic colours. Place a small layer of pebbles at the bottom of shoebox or pot. Fill it with soil to an inch from the top. Next dig small holes, about an inch deep and plant seeds, one in each hole. Cover the holes and water the seeds until the soil becomes moist.

Place your pots/shoeboxes in an area with sunlight and water them every day. Soon the seeds will start sprouting.
Some suggestions for your home garden:

Carrots. This root vegetable makes a pretty house plant. Cut a large carrot about an inch from the tip. Remove its leaves and plant it in soil with its crown sticking out. Soon, it will sprout beautiful leaves. Keep your carrots in a spot that gets some sun and some shade.

Snake gourd, bitter gourd, ribbed gourd and ladies fingers. Buy seeds. They will sprout quickly and grow fast. They’re easy to handle and the kids will love to eat what they grow! An easy way to get them to love fresh vegetables.
Aloe Vera. This is a plant that’s hard to kill with its thick, hard leaves. The sap in the leaves can soothe burns.
Money plant and other creepers. Creepers are plants that can’t stand by themselves. They lean on walls and climb around supports.

The money plant is an interesting creeper that’s easy to grow. All you need is a cutting of its stem. Place it in some water or soil. Soon, it will grow and you’ll have to guide it by placing sticks or other support to climb.

Weekends are best for gathering pots, seeds and manure. The Internet has a plethora of information on how best to tend your plants. Browsing the net for information and developing your kitchen garden offers excellent opportunities for learning biology and for families to bond. Every new plant that sprouts and flourishes is an occasion for celebration!

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