Home > Great Big Greenhouse Blog > July 2014 > GARDEN TALK with DOUG - USE GARDENING FOR QUALITY FAMILY TIME


We are all reading more and more how our younger children are spending too much time indoors on electronics and too little time outside playing.  Being outside, as a family, provides opportunities and activities for family time in the garden.  Here are some ideas to do together as a family:

·         PLANT A VEGETABLE GARDEN.  The rewards of a vegetable garden are as exciting to adults as they are to children, giving both a sense of accomplishment.  Sharing the joy and excitement or even the disappointment and failure of a vegetable garden strengthens family ties.  One of my greatest joy in life was teaching my sons to vegetable garden when they were toddlers.  And now, as young adults, they have their own gardens and enjoy growing their own food. Vegetable gardening allows us to get back to nature with growing some of our own food and learning to work with soil, bugs, water, etc.

·         PLANT A SHRUB OR TREE.  Plant a tree for celebration whether it is for a birthday, anniversary, or remembrance.  Just like human beings, plants go through growth spurts and will need to be attended to with watering or feeding.  Donna and I have a few plants in our landscape that we planted for special observances.  Every time I am around these plants it makes me reminisce about the reasons we chose to plant these particular shrubs or trees.

·         LEARN PLANT NAMES.  Spending time in the garden to learn about plants can be fun for grownups and kids both.  In addition to learning about food crops and beautiful flowers, this time is a perfect opportunity to learn about plant parts, the plants’ growing habits, and their history.

·         THE ART OF SHARING.  Giving plants or vegetables to neighbors, friends, relatives, or needy organizations is extremely satisfying.  I have never met anyone who was not delighted in receiving fresh produce from a vegetable garden, or new starter plants that you rooted or divided, or some freshly cut flowers.  Sharing is an opportunity to show that you care about others.

The garden is fertile ground of opportunities for families to grow together and learn together.  It offers the opportunity for family to share thoughts, ideas – to talk and to laugh – and to listen to each other – by working together without the distraction of the cel phone or other popular electronic devices.  All these electronic devices have a need in our society today but it shouldn’t be at the expense of enjoying the outdoors and being around nature.  Appreciate and respect the outdoors, listen to the natural sounds of the wind, the birds, and animals, and you will be a better person for doing so. 

“Be glad of life because it gives you a chance to love, to work, to play, and to look up at the stars”

                                                                                                                Henry Van Dyke

Posted: 7/25/2014 by Doug Hensel | with 0 comment(s)
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