There are numerous benefits to growing your own food in your garden with children which I will explore below. I also have a book giveaway at the end of this blog post to help you and your children grow your own, with recipe inspiration for your homegrown produce.
In many ways we are really lucky to have a large garden of 90 feet which the children can run around and explore. In other ways we are not so lucky as it’s going to cost a small fortune to landscape such a huge space and may even require a second mortgage!
Ever since I was a child I wanted to grow my own food. I’ve honestly got no clue what I am doing, but since me and Ben bought our first home together in 2014 we have been growing fruit and vegetables every summer.
Before this house we lived for three years in a flat with no garden. And before this I lived in no less than 10 houses from my late teens to mid-twenties and many were flats, shared houses and bedsits without a garden to call my own.
I always knew that as soon as we had a garden we would grow some fruits and vegetables. I had my eye on some vegetable trugs for a long time and when we moved in we bought some!
The garden already had a mulberry tree, cherry tree and raspberries. We have kept these and also added pear, plum and apple trees, as well as a huge strawberry patch.
We grow different vegetables each year in our two vegetable trugs, which are around 1m in length each. We’ve also grown in sacks and patio pots. We’ve grown potatoes, leeks, tomatoes, green beans, courgettes, carrots and salad leaves.
Our garden and patio is a royal mess, to me anyway, and needs a good sort out. We plan on building more raised vegetable planters when we eventually get round to properly landscaping the garden. We’d like to grow more and learn more about growing.
It’s also a plan for the future as we are so busy with work currently and continuing to do up our home. With all this and raising two children, we’ve never had enough time to expand and nurture a vegetable patch, but have grown as much as our free time currently permits. We’ve had good intentions and we always enjoy eating what we have managed to grow.
Reasons to grow your own food with kids
Growing our own vegetables is something that brings value to myself and my children. There are lots of benefits to growing your own food, especially when getting kids involved, which I’ll share below.
- Truly organic – only by growing your own produce will you be able to control exactly what goes into the soil and on the food for it to grow. You can purchase organic seeds and over time, save your own.
- Fresher than fresh – it’s no secret that supermarket food from the fresh aisle is, well, not so fresh! Some fruits and vegetables have been shipped from abroad, stored and then sat on the shelves losing precious nutrients at every step. Growing your own means you can eat food that has just been picked, like instantly or 5 minutes ago. You can’t get much fresher than that.
- Higher in nutrients – as I just mentioned, the longer fruits and vegetables sit around, the more their nutrients deplete. The fresher they are, the higher they are in nutritional value. If you pick your own produce from your garden right at the moment you need it, then you will maximise the nutritional value.
- Encourage a love for nature – getting outdoors, in fresh air is super healthy, will lessen screen time and hopefully encourage a love for the great outdoors and nature itself. They will learn the value of all the plant cycle and how important wildlife is, such as bees and butterflies to pollinate and worms to fertilize the compost. Rather than see these things as pests, it will hopefully encourage them to love insects and wildlife as we need them for food production.
- A valuable skill – learning to grow your own and to save seeds is a valuable skill that can save money and be used as a survival skill if needed.
- Healthy eating habits – lots of kids hate certain vegetables, or all of them, but you’ll be surprised how many they will eat when they grow them by themselves. They are proud to eat what they have grown and it can be a great way of encouraging healthy eating habits from a young age.
- Teaches patience – even as adults we can be very impatient and want everything done yesterday (guilty!), but gardening and growing your own food requires patience as it takes time. It’s so exciting when those first seeds sprout and the food starts growing. It’s amazing how excited the kids get!
- Family bonding – it also creates quality time together and a hobby that can be enjoyed by all ages.
Win the Grow It, Cook It: Simple Gardening Projects and Delicious Recipes book!
“Grow It, Cook It is the children’s cookbook that starts with the seed of a good idea. More than a cookbook, this innovative book offers a fresh approach to healthy eating by getting children involved in food right from the start. Children will learn that when they eat a carrot, they’re biting into a root; salads are made up of leaves; and berries are the fruit and seeds of plants, encouraging an early appreciation of food and its origins.
The recipes in the book take the homegrown fruits, vegetables, and herbs and use a variety of cooking methods and store-bought ingredients to transform them into truly homemade meals. All the “crops” can be grown in pots, so young chefs don’t even need a large garden to enjoy Grow It, Cook It.”
I have one copy of this fabulous book to give to one lucky reader! This great book is full of so many tips for children, and beginner adults, to start to grow your own food. It also has recipe ideas for inspiration once your produce is ready to pick!
Full terms and conditions are below. UK only.
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Terms and conditions
There will be one winner
The prize is 1x Grow It, Cook It book
The winner will be picked at random by Rafflecopter & notified by email within 28 days
The prize must be claimed within 28 days of the first notification email or it will be forfeited
The prize will only be sent to a UK address using Royal Mail
There is no limit on the number of entries per person. Follow the instructions for multiple entries
All entries must be received by the date and time specified
This giveaway is open to the UK only.