PUBLISHED IN THE RENO GAZETTE-JOURNAL
Becoming a parent changes your whole world, and it changes your garden too. With little ones at home, it is a challenge to find time to work in the landscape. And, the landscape itself is different. Play houses and sandboxes encroach upon garden beds, and monster truck rallies and tea parties that occur with reckless abandon may damage garden plants. It can be frustrating to garden around children, so try gardening with them instead.
Make children a part of the planning, planting, maintaining and harvesting process to spend quality time with them and your garden simultaneously. The benefits are endless. Life skills such as responsibility, planning, communicating and problem-solving can be taught in the garden. This outdoor classroom also allows children to make scientific discoveries like how seeds sprout and plants grow; how soil, water and sunlight interact; how beneficial and pest insects impact the garden; and where our food comes from. A love for gardening and the outdoors, as well as the values of patience and hard work, can be passed down from generation to generation in the garden.