Explore three plants kids can grow with help from an adult family member. Growing vegetables is a simple way to introduce young children to gardening. An easy-to-grow vegetable is the exceptionally sweet cherry tomato. Sun gold is a variety that is a superstar performer in low-desert gardens, and kids love to pick them and eat on the spot.
Here are some easy steps to get them started:
You and your child will need to select an area with plenty of morning sunlight at least six to eight hours.
Prepare your soil by applying a layer of compost or well-rotted manure at least 2 to 3 inches thick. Work into the soil at least 10 to 12 inches deep. Plant your tomato plant.
Water your tomato plants by watering deeply (soil should remain moist but not soggy).
In about 60 days, the kids can begin to harvest these delicious tomatoes.
As your young gardeners continue to grow and develop their gardening skills, have them try their hand at growing Haworthia faciata, or commonly called zebra plant, in the ground or in a container.
Select an area in the garden or patio that receives little light or they can even be grown as a houseplant.
Keep roots dry. Zebra plants do not like their roots to remain wet for prolonged periods, so always allow the soil to dry out between watering.
Echinopsis spp., or Easter lilies, are a cactus that can be grown by a teenager. Simply start seeding during warm weather (March through September) in a container. Plant seed in a potting soil mix with added perlite or pumice. Keep soil moist until a cactus seedling emerges from soil. The seedlings look like little cats with pointed ears. Keep seedlings in pots until they reach at least 1 to 2 inches tall, and you can transplant into a larger pot. The secret to transplanting these small cactus seedlings is to gently hold the seedling by the “cat” ear (never by the delicate stem). Once transplanted, sprinkle the cactus seedlings with a few pellets of a granular fertilizer like Osmocote, to get your cactus seedlings off to a good start.