Sowing the Seeds of FUN … ‘National Children’s Gardening Week’
The Burpee Seeds Europe team know that the earlier we celebrate the joy of gardening with our children the more likely they are to continue growing their own vegetables, fruit, and flowers in the future.
With ‘National Children’s Gardening Week’ heading our way on 29th May, and with many youngsters having found lockdowns and COVID very hard to cope with mentally, now would be the perfect time to introduce little ones to sowing seeds.
It is amazing how children react to tasting homegrown vegetables picked fresh in the garden, and the joy they feel as they see seeds sprout is wonderful to watch.
The following list of flowers and veg varieties below are easy to grow and ideal for budding little gardeners. So, grab your wellies and some trowels and let’s go!!!
Sunflowers – ‘Ms Mars’, ‘Pikes Peak’, ‘Tiger Eye’
Sunflowers are the ideal introductory seeds for children to garden with. They are easy to sow, easy to grow, and look jolly too! ‘Ms Mars’ is lovely because of its red colour and great for little ones as it can be grown in a pot. Whilst ‘Pikes Peak’ is MASSIVE and great for measuring or growing with a sibling for a sunflower race!
How to Use:
Use the seeds after harvesting to feed the birds.
Dry the flowers for indoor displays.
Try a sunflower race to see whose flower is growing the highest the quickest
Zinnias – ‘Forecast’
Zinnias are wonderful and so easy to grow! Simply sow direct outdoors where they are to grow from April to May. ‘Forecast’ has such a beautifully bright mix of colours that they look like sweeties growing in the garden.
How to Use:
Try to get children creative by painting or photographing these lovely blooms.
Zinnias are perfect as pressed flowers and can be used to create pictures or birthday cards.
Radish – ‘Ostergruss Rosa 2’
It is surprising how many children love homegrown radishes straight from the garden. But even they don’t like the taste of them, this radish is a great vegetable to begin gardening with. It is easy and quick to grow and ‘Ostergruss Rosa 2’ is a gorgeous rosy, pink colour that grows to 20 cm long!
How to Use:
Little ones can be proud to use their own produce for popping into summer salads.
Try making little radish men or other vegetable art.
Cucumber – ‘Bush Champion’
Cucumbers are great for kids to grow and ‘Bush Champion’ is perfect for those who do not have a garden at all as it can be grown in a container.
How to Use:
These are ideal for making cucumber boats and filling them with cream cheese or houmous.
Cut the ends off and dip into paint and use for vegetable stamping
Tomato – ‘Veranda Red’, ‘Shimmer’, ‘Honeycomb’
Most children are surprised by the different flavours you can get with various tomato varieties. Tomato ‘Honeycomb proved to be a great success with the school children that tried it at the RHS Hampton Court Festival because it tastes so sweet! And for something very groovy to look at, ‘Shimmer’ is great fun with its gold stripes and nice thick flesh. ‘Veranda Red’ can be grown in pots and is also blight-resistant ensuring that little gardeners won’t be disappointed with their harvest!
Blindfold taste test …to see if children can guess the variety
Make your own ketchup (with adults helping!)
Draw the lifecycle of the tomato to see if the child remembers the journey from planting the seed to eating the tomato.
Women Talking has teamed up with Burpee Europe and Marshalls Garden to offer three lucky readers the chance to win three great packets of garden seeds. The prize bundle of seeds includes Zinnia ‘Forecast’, Sunflower ‘Tiger Eye’ and Sunflower ‘Ms Mar’s’
These varieties have been bred by Burpee Europe, they are renowned for the development of new varieties of vegetables and flowers for use by home gardeners. Their passion is to develop new tasty, disease resistant vegetables and stunning blooms for use by home gardeners around the world and to encourage the cultivation of gardens by individuals and communities.
Marshalls Garden were founded over 75 years ago and are known for selling unique varieties to garden lovers all over the UK. They are proud to offer a wide and varied selection of vegetable, fruit, and flower seeds from Burpee Europe. These varieties include, peppers, tomatoes, courgettes, cucumbers, melons, okra, chillies, celosia, marigolds, sunflowers, zinnia and more.
Marshalls Garden also sells a full range of vegetable and fruit plants, bedding, perennials, trees and bulbs, as well as garden care products.
This competition has now closed.
*The editor’s decision is final and there is no cash alternative.