If you garden or maintain your backyard in any way, you know it can be exhausting and leave you uniquely sore as you ponder the resilience of weeds and why you must replace your mulch each year. Of course, it is also rewarding to enjoy the results of your efforts all summer long. The ultimate in “no pain, no gain.”
Why not lessen the burden on you by turning backyard sprucing into a family activity? With just a bit of instruction, even the smallest kids can be gardeners. Not only will they be lessening your burden, you will be helping them get a bit more physical activity (and you thought it was all about you).
A few things you can share with your kids…
Spring Cleanup: Most lawns need a thorough spring cleanup. This tedious job of picking up small branches and the like can be tough on an adult back. But for a small child (especially one that is racing against their sibling to collect the most) it’s a fun and easy clean up game that gets them moving.
Weeding: It’s as if as soon as the snow melts, the weeds grow. In fact, sometimes it seems like the weeds grow better than the flowers and plants we want to see flourish (strike two for mulch!). Teach kids how to yank a weed to the root and they can be your “weed attack” team. This ongoing activity includes an arm workout and a bit of walking as weeds are gathered.
Aerating Soil: Offer your kids a small, handheld raking tool and teach them how to aerate the soil to prepare it for planting. An upper body workout for sure, kids will be using their muscles in a way they probably don’t usually get to.
Lugging Pots and More: You know the feeling, you have made your way around the flower nursery finding just the right flowers to make your garden grow. But, then you get home and ALL of those plants need to make their way from your car to that perfect spot (or if you like me then from one “perfect” spot to another). Let your kids do the lugging while you do the perfect planning.
From lugging out the hose to water plants to maintaining health of flowers and vegetables, the garden offers kids many ways to be active all summer long. It also may just give you a little more time to relax too!
Looking for a little backyard inspiration? I’ve rounded up some great family-friendly sites for you here: