If you're lucky enough to have some outdoor space, now is a good time to introduce your children to gardening. If you don't have a garden, or only have a balcony, there's still lots of fun to be had with seeds and plants.
Here are some of the Newbie teams favourite gardening activities for those green fingered little ones!
Sow Some Seeds
The obvious activity to begin with, particularly in spring, is sowing! Get your kids to help with this year’s vegetables. If you have the space, offer them an area of their own, even if it’s just a couple of pots of tomatoes, which are happy enough growing up walls.
Ask them to compile a (realistic!) list of what they’d like to grow then help them start it all off. But – and this is important – let them do as much of the work involved as they can so that they have a real sense of ownership over their space. This is absolutely the best way to keep them excited and engaged with the whole process.
If you don’t have a garden, sow something indoors. Sow microgreens such as cress or mustard onto a damp paper towel. Move them to a bright windowsill once they’ve sprouted and keep them damp. They’ll give something tasty to eat within a matter of days.
Start a Sunflower Race
Sunflowers are mainly planted from mid-April to the end of May, so now is a good time to order your seeds.
Sunflowers seeds can be sown directly into soil. The RHS website
has easy to follow instructions for having a go. Plant 10cm apart and remember to mark where each person's plant will appear. Once the new shoots appear, the race is on.
Potato faces using cress seeds
Most of you will remember growing cress in cotton wool at school. The beauty of cress is it's fast-growing, making it ideal for younger kids. 'Potato faces' are easy to create.
All you need is a packet of cress seeds, some potatoes and some cotton wool. Parents will need to slice off the top of the potato and scoop out a little hollow. You'll also need to cut some off the bottom so the potato can stand up. Make the potato's face with paint or felt tips.
Once that's done, dampen the cotton wool and place it on the top of the potato. Sprinkle the cress seeds on the cotton wool, place in a sunny spot like a windowsill and wait for the magic to happen.
Sprout Kitchen Scraps
Did you know that many kitchen scraps will sprout into new plants if given a little water? This includes the tops of carrots, beetroot, pineapple and turnip, as well as the stumps of vegetables like celery and onions. Sit them in a saucer of water and watch them burst back into life.