This spring here are some tips to get your kids involved in your April Garden. Here’s what we’re planting and harvesting this April in our garden with kids!
Tips for April Gardening with Kids
April always feels like the busiest gardening month of the year for us. We are harvesting the last of cool-season vegetable. The kids are each eating a small handful of snow peas, a couple of strawberries, and a carrot out of our garden each day.
Although they are my daily “helpers,” as I look back on the pictures I have taken, they are all of the plants!
You will just have to use your imaginations on how a 2 year old gently pull the peas off the plants by himself (NOT) A few entire plants have been uprooted with his eagerness to eat his “prize.” I really can’t complain as both kids do eat so healthy!
In the last couple of weeks, we have planted green pole beans, bush beans, cowpeas, and Lima beans. Yes, Lima beans. My kids and I just ADORE fresh Lima beans right out of their pods. Please don’t think we are crazy! Last year, my tot was only 1 1/2 and he would check the plants every day for the Lima beans and did not want to share.
I promise you, fresh Lima beans taste completely different than anything you can buy in the store. I will thumb wrestle any family member for the chance to eat fresh Lima beans!!!
We don’t have a ton of space, but planted a small 2’x5′ section and hope to eat a few! The cowpeas were not as big of a hit as the Limas last year. They were the plant we tried for the first time! But, it was fun to compare and contrast the differences in tastes, amount of beans in each pod and colors – so we planted them again.
I wanted to get some sweet potato slips in the ground this week but didn’t make it to the store for them. We haven’t grown these yet and chose them as our “new plant” of the year. Next week!
Growing Potatoes with Kids
The potatoes are growing well. The nice thing about planting on Valentine’s Day is that we always can figure out when they have been growing for 80 days. They still have a month yet. We planted 4 containers this year instead of just one and 3 are doing really well. The fourth is sitting just out of reach of my hose and looked very sad today.
Guess watering your plants really does make a difference =) I gave it a good drink and will have to make sure it gets more water in the next month!
Growing Beets with Kids
And, although I have planted beet seeds every year of our garden (going on 4 years now) this is the first year I have gotten them to grow. I am so excited and looking forward to harvesting them for some Borscht!
Their leaves were attacked by caterpillars last month – check the leaves out in “the bad” section of this post. They surprisingly bounced back after a quick spray of organic insecticide and the new leaves are beautiful!
Here is one of the garden beds this month. I like to mix flowers and veggies in my raised beds and have marigolds, mums, peppers, beets, and onions. It is kind of a weird combo – but you have to remember that I have young kids helping me garden. If they want to plant something in a specific spot – I don’t mind!
Growing Peppers with Kids
The peppers just started blossoming! Last year, our peppers lasted almost 9 whole months of production. We were so sick of peppers we were giving them away to neighbors. I am hoping for another fantastic crop. We only plant mild peppers since we have kids.
My mom burnt her hands working with some hot peppers from the garden, and I am nervous to have the kids working around peppers that could possibly do that. If you have hot peppers where your kids have access to them, please be extra careful. Some peppers should be handled with rubber gloves!
Growing Tomatoes with Kids
My Roma tomatoes are blossoming too! With the early heat we are having and the lack of freezing this winter, I am predicting that the veggies are going to be hit hard with pests this year. My first line of defense is trying to keep healthy plants, observing them daily, and handpicking off any pests I see.
Cross your fingers for us that we get any tomatoes. We are going to need all the help we can get!
Growing Carrots with Kids
Another section of carrots is ready to harvest! If you missed the carrot post a while back, we love growing carrots, but they take FOREVER to grow. Planting in succession really helps. I also limit the kids to 1-2 carrots per day.
This keeps the crop available to them for a long time AND for some reason, setting a limit increases their desire to harvest them =)
Growing Blueberries with kids
As for fruit – we added blueberry bushes to our yard 2 years ago. Last year, we harvested a couple of handfuls. This year, it looks like we have doubled our crop. My 2 year old has reduced it back to a couple of handfuls. He keeps picking the “green balls.” ARGH! I just have to tell myself that he is learning about the world and that they are just blueberries, but my plants are kind-of-like my temporary children.
I love and care for them daily and would REALLY like them to fruit for us! Maybe next year.
Growing Cowpeas with Kids
And last, but not least, the cowpeas. Last fall, I posted some pictures and a video of the plant.
They grew taller than I thought they would with long pods. This year, I was surprised at how pretty the new plants are as I was only remembering the end of the season from last year. It will be interesting to see how these do!
What is in your garden this month?