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Gardening help?

March 23rd, 2015 at 12:44 am

I would like to help my DS1 grow a couple of plants this summer. He was very interested in the seed packets last time we were at the hardware store, and I think he'd enjoy growing a few things -- planting, watering, hopefully harvesting. He has expressed an interest in growing carrots because he saw Curious George do this.

Anyway, my DH and I are lacking thumbs in any shades of green. Also, I have no idea of the quality of the soil around our house. Ideally, I'd like to grow a couple of things in big pots, so I can use new soil and move them around depending on sun and possibly move them to the neighbors while we are on traveling this summer.

Is this even possible? I know there are some expert gardeners on this site. Do you have any suggestions on something that would be easy to grow in a pot and enjoyable for a three-year-old to "tend"? Eventually, we might be up for putting in some raised beds and having a bigger garden, but for now I'll consider it a success if we can keep one plant alive all summer. Smile

Any advice would be appreciated!

7 Responses to “Gardening help?”

  1. Carol Says:

    Green beans are the easiest to grow from seed.I have grown about 6 plants in a long rectangular flower pot and have gotten enough beans for supper ( for 2 adults) every few days or so.
    I grow cherry tomatoes in pots( one plant per pot). Sun gold are orange colored and really tasty. You can buy one well-started plant a n d tend it. My grandson likes to pick the tomatoes and just pop them in. You can get a bag of potting soil at the garden center where you get the tomatoes.They like lots of Sun. Enjoy!

  2. LuckyRobin Says:

    Radishes give the fastest payoff. But I'd plant them in a window box (doesn't have to attach to the house, can go on a deck or something) as opposed to a pot if you aren't putting them in the ground. Lettuce and spinach do well in containers. Cherry tomatoes do well in a large pot or a hanging basket. Oregano is something very simple to grow and takes well to pots. Actually most herbs take well to pots. Chives are pretty foolproof and they self-seed and come back the next year. Carrots are not really a container vegetable. If you want to grow them I'd make a small raised bed about 2 feet by 2 feet with cinderblocks double stacked. Fill the inside with bagged garden soil and all the little openings in the cinderblocks. You can plant a different plant in each opening in the top set of blocks and plant carrots in the center. If you decide you don't want the little garden there the next year it is simple to move.

  3. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    I would recommend exactly what Carol has.

    Green beans because they have big seeds for the three year old to handle, sprout quickly to keep up his excitement, and never fail to produce as long as you keep the plant alive. Your two basic choices are 1)bush type which bear sooner and stay small but quit making beans and die after a few week and 2) pole type which make a vine that need support on a trellis, fence, or dead branch stuck in the ground. Pole green beans have to grow bigger before they start bearing so, you have to wait longer. But you get more beans from them over a longer period of time.

    Sungold is an orange cherry tomato such as you would put in a salad. They are incredibly sweet. Sometimes they taste like cotton candy to me! They are easy to see and pick. It, too, would need support like a large trellis or cage. I'd try to find baby plants rather than grow this from seed your first time (though they are easy from seed-- the initial watering is a little tickier than for beans.)

    Both these things will do fine in very large pots. But wind can become a problem when growing big plants in pots. And if you live where it gets hot, you might sometimes have to water twice per day.

  4. creditcardfree Says:

    I agree with the green beans (and snow peas)...easy to grow! My girls liked going out every other night or so to see how many they could pull from the vines. We only added some top soil to our garden which was 8x8 feet. I haven't done anything in pots though. If you go with the green beans you could do some in a pot and some in the ground. Onions and tomatoes are pretty easy also, but may seem to take awhile to grow...and not sure if your 3 year old likes onions. He might like trying though if he planted and grew it. That is what is fun about gardens!

  5. VS_ozgirl Says:

    Maybe strawberries?

  6. CB in the City Says:

    I'll chime in on the radishes. I was always in charge of the radishes when I was a kid! They are easy, easy, easy and grow fast!

  7. chloe Says:

    Thanks, everyone, for your advice! Based on what you've said, I am thinking of growing green beans (the bush kind) and chives from seed, and cherry tomatoes from a starter plant. DS1 currently loves green beans, so I think that will be fun, and I'm hoping I can convince him to start liking tomatoes if he grows them himself. I'm not sure he's ready for radishes yet, although I love them!

    I'll probably have more questions once I actually start to implement this, so I'll probably post again about it soon!

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