Planning: Can enough be said about the subject? Maybe, but doubtful. Planning is the conscious thinking ahead of what will be done and creating a way to do it. A simple piece of paper and a little knowledge of what can be planted next to each other is all you need. Our children’s births are not always planned, but welcome. Once they are here, planning on meeting them at the end successfully should begin. A piece of paper and a little bit of knowledge about what can be put together and what can’t is all you need.
Plotting: Plotting your piece of ground and getting it ready is a way to give your garden the best possibility of great growth potential. Gardening for families is no different. Making sure that your son or daughter’s environment is conducive to giving them the best shot at success, great growth potential, is within your control, so take it and make it the best you can.
Picking: What do you want to plant in your garden? What will you use? Gardening for families is not different here, either. While knowing what goes in must come out, controlling what goes into your child is as important as monitoring what comes out. While they are young, teach them the value of good input and show them the rewards of good output.
Planting: While choosing what goes into your garden, actually putting it there is your responsibility and no one else’s! This can’t be stressed enough. If you don’t fill up the garden with good things, things that are desirable, then others will come along and dump garbage in, the left over things they have already used and half eaten and dump them in your child’s life. What right do they have to do that? None, it’s just that if a space is empty, the natural inclination is to fill it up! Make sure you plant what will benefit your child and teach him to plant those things within others.
Watering/Feeding: Miracle Grow is the best plant food on the market today. No one can beat it in the reliability area and there are numerous stories of record breaking produce being grown with the timely and careful application of the substance. If you are watering and feeding your children with the right food and water, they will be full constantly and not need anything else. Teaching your child to fish instead of giving him fish is what this lesson in the garden is all about. Seeking out the right types of food and water will sustain him/her and always keep them growing.
Weeding: No matter how much time and energy you put into planning, plotting, picking and planting your garden, if you don’t maintain it by pulling weeds and making sure the soil is still good, your garden will always shrivel up and die. The same can be said about the lives of our children. So desperate for love and affection, if you give them the best of everything and place them right where they will have the best potential for success and walk away, they’ll shrivel up and die, too. Constant attention and nurturing can not be replaced by things or fancy houses. Even if your garden is in the middle stages, it’s not too late to try to repair any damage that might have been done by storms that inevitably come along. Staking and clearing debris out of a garden is something that many of us are forced to do…are you willing to get dirty to save the garden after the storm?
No matter how things look on the outside, when you take them off the vine and crack them open, will they be plentiful or dried up? Will there be small seeds that never really grew or giant peas ripe and ready to harvest?
Gardening for families can be used for the purposes of not only growing your relationship with your children or grandchildren, it can also be used to show them how important it is that they understand how fortunate they are. Sharing food from the garden is one way to involve children in the art of giving early. Gardening for a specific family, and posting their picture (if you have one) at the end of a certain row adds incentive for the child to take extra special care of their “family’s row”.
So, when thinking of valuable ways to teach life lessons to your little ones, make gardening for families exciting for your child- and make sure there is more on the agenda than simply growing bell peppers.