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How To Interest Children In Gardening

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The holiday is the best time to engage children in productive activities, gardening being one of them.

While officiating over a gardening event recently, Julius Mutebi, Mayor of Kira municipality urged parents to interest their children in urban farming.

He noted that several families are struggling to survive amidst the rocketing fuel and commodity prices simply because they don’t grow their own food.

Mutebi applauded the teachers of Kids Kingdom kindergarten and day center Namugongo for helping the children to have their own gardens. 

Children between 2-5 years old grow vegetables and culinary herbs including; carrots, Sukuma wiki, spinach, nakati, cauliflower, sage, cabbage and green pepper among others.

They also explain how the plants are grown, harvested and prepared plus the various food values our bodies gain from them. 

Each child has a potted garden.

“Land is becoming limited for the growing population,” Mutebi said adding, “We should start growing food in our small spaces.”

The school director, oweekitiibwa Sylvia Mazzi Kakonge who is also the former minister of research and information in the Buganda Kingdom, said the school found it vital to introduce kids to urban farming. 

“This has enabled them to appreciate how food is grown. They avoid junk food as well,” she said. 

 “The children mix soil, plant the seedlings and water their gardens. They enjoy seeing their plants grow,” she explained.

Kakonge added that along the way, as children get involved in gardening, they sharpen their observation skills, critical thinking and understanding of nature.

How to interest the kids in gardening?

Steven Kirumira, a gardener says gardening can be fun and exciting for children of all ages. 

He adds that most children love getting their hands dirty. They enjoy planting seeds and seeing them grow. 

“Buy for them gumboots and the necessary tools like small hoes, rakes, wheelbarrows and shovels,” he advises.

Also, choose for them plants that are easy to grow. Vegetables and spices are good to start with because most are of low maintenance yet they grow fast.

These include; Sukuma wiki, spinach, cabbage, spring onions, mint and carrots among others.

“Allow them to harvest their produce and help them to prepare a meal. It will motivate them to grow more food,” he opines.

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