Easy Garden Ideas For Kids – Start A Micro-Garden! 4

Easy Garden Ideas for Kids

Teaching kids how to garden is a useful skill they’ll enjoy for a lifetime, but getting started can be overwhelming. We invite you to start small with us and I’ll share some beginner garden ideas for kids – starting with a micro-garden! 


Plus some really yummy recipe ideas if you decided to join us. 


It’s time to turn our black thumb into a green thumb. 


Just over two years ago I started a garden because I wanted to learn how to grow my own food and I wanted the same for my daughter. But I get overwhelmed. 


So last week I was talking with my friend Allison about it and she had a great suggestion.  Plant a seed and take daily photos and regular videos to see how it grows. One seed. Not a whole garden. Start small.


I thought that was an awesome idea!!! We’re so busy that starting a big garden may never happen. But who can’t get a little dirt and plant one (or three) seeds?  Let’s do this! After much thought, I’ve decided to call this a micro-garden.  I googled around and found there’s already such a thing as a micro-garden, but we’re gonna tweak the term for our purposes and use it to mean – let’s plant something and watch it grow and not get overwhelmed.


Teaching kids to garden is SUCH an awesome skill. It’s scary that there are so many kids that can’t identify vegetables, don’t know how they grow or where they come from. Over the weekend I came across this TED talk. Many kids live in food deserts – and many live within walking distance of fresh produce and still don’t eat it and can’t identify it. It’s time for us to turn the tables and make a change together. 



Maybe it’s the survivalist in me, but I can’t help but think that we Americans are vulnerable.


We rely on grocery stores with their “just in time” stocking philosophy – carrying only three days worth of food to feed their regular customers. What would happen if there were some interruption in the ability of stores to get food?  A natural disaster. Or Isis doing something crazy. Could we take care of ourselves? I’d be dead as a doornail…but I’m learning!


Secondly, I’ve thought a lot about the lost arts from the past – canning, pickling, dehydrating and fermenting. It’s time to start growing our own and learning these basic skills of food storage. If we support each other and learn how to do this together it will be much less daunting. 


Meet Tom the Tomato

Tom the Tomato

Disclaimer. I’ve already started a compost pile. It’s basically a big planter that I throw all my organic veggie scraps and coffee grounds in and top with leaves from the oak trees. I put a plastic bin lid on top and I use a shovel to turn the mixture every now and then. I made the mistake of not turning the first time and had tons of seeds from the composted tomatoes and peppers growing in random places in my garden. Apparently the mixture needs to get hot enough to break all the materials down. Creepy crawlies like caterpillars and worms help break it all down. It smells rich and earthy. If you haven’t started any compost, go grab some compost from your local hardware store along with some potting soil. 


Here’s how we got started.


We challenge you to join us. Start a micro-garden yourself or with your kids. Post your photos on facebook, twitter or instagram with #tomthetomato. 


I’m counting on those of you that are already gardening experts to give us advice and take the challenge up with someone or some child you know that would be just as excited to learn how as we are!

If you’re going to try starting a tomato plant like we are, here are some tomato recipes to inspire you!

Grilled Balsamic Tomato Bruschetta

Balsamic Tomato Bruschetta

Cheesy Kale Tomato Sauce

Cheesy Kale Tomato Sauce

Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant and Marinated Tomato Sandwich

Mouth-Watering Roasted Eggplant Sandwich

Pineapple Tomato Chimichurri Over Teriyaki Tofu

Tofu Teriyaki



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4 thoughts on “Easy Garden Ideas For Kids – Start A Micro-Garden!

  • Dave Kemper

    There are various single container starter kits at the “box” stores that would be ideal for kids to start with. Our community center has a roll around garden bed in which the kids have grown carrots, lettuce and radishes in the past year. In these times, this isn’t just a fun learning project anymore, it’s an essential knowledge base that may someday save you or your families lives. Our bodies respond much better to naturally grown foods than to the processed foods that are so readily available. This should be a “must teach” item for all parents.