If there is one thing my children can all agree on it is that they love to garden! I am no expert gardener, but it is a hobby I started during quarantine and ended up enjoying way more than I anticipated. My kids loved it as well and so we became the family with the vegetable garden.
We started small with one raised bed and over the years has grown to three raised beds. We learned with a little reading, research, dirt, and TLC the South is a great place to garden year-round. It can be a game of trial and error, but the more you know the better your garden will grow.
Here are my tips for getting started gardening with kids.
First, know what region you are in. You can find this with a quick google search of the USDA planting zones. This will help you know exactly what month to plant which fruits and vegetables in order to have the best chance of success weather-wise. Second, if you go to farmers’ markets in your area don’t be afraid to “ask an expert.” Your local farmers are a wealth of knowledge and advice.
Next, shop for seeds. Buy a large variety and keep them in a safe, dry spot. The seed package is your best friend and will instruct you on the exact location, depth, and time to germinate. Good gardening gloves and shovels are also helpful to have. Some crops need to be started inside like broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, and tomatoes due to slower root development. To keep bugs away plant citronella, mint, and basil as these are natural deterrents for many pesky bugs that you do not want in your garden.
Lastly, do not overwater! My kids love to fight over, or take turns, watering our garden. However, if you overwater your plants there will not be enough air pockets causing them to drown. Watering your garden once a day in the morning or late afternoon is ideal.
Gardening can be fun for the whole family with the right tools, resources, and a little bit of patience.
The best time to plant your spring garden in Georgia is between March and May and can be harvested in late summer. Have fun and happy gardening!