5 fun indoor gardening activities for a rainy day
While Christmas and New Year are over, it’ll still be a while before temperatures begin to rise and we start seeing more of the sun. It’s likely you’ve been spending less and less time outdoors lately, thanks to the freezing temperatures and frequent showery spells. So, if you and your little ones are getting tired of watching TV and playing with the usual toys, you might be looking for a way to get back in touch with nature without having to brave the poor weather.
Nicky Roeber is the Online Horticultural Expert at Wyevale Garden Centres. Here, he shares his five favourite indoor gardening activities that your kids can get involved with on a rainy day.
Indoor gardening with your kids is the perfect solution to this. Not only will this help them feel closer to the outdoors, but it can also have some health and social benefits. For example, plants can help to improve the air quality in your home. Plus, having a connection with greenery can help to improve your mental wellbeing, and even make you more productive, according to a paper from the American Psychological Association.
So, to help cure the cabin fever you and your family might be struggling with this winter, I’m going to give you some indoor gardening ideas that will help.
Make a herb garden for your kitchen
Creating a space in your kitchen where you can grow herbs to use in your cooking is a great way to teach your little ones about gardening. This is because they don’t take a lot of time or effort to maintain — most of the work is in setting your herb garden up and, once it’s up and running, you won’t have to do much more than water your pots every once in a while.
As long as you choose the right spot for your herb garden and ensure you give your plants the right conditions to thrive under, you and your kids will be able to watch them flourish without having to tend to them too much.
I Heart Crafty Things has a great guide to creating a herb garden for kids, which explains everything you need to know. It lists all of the equipment you’ll need and takes you through everything from choosing the perfect place to assemble it. Follow their advice and you and your little ones will have a flourishing herb garden in no time.
Make your own terrariums
Not only will your little ones enjoy creating their own terrariums, but they’ll look lovely in your home once they’re finished. Plus, they will continue to grow long after they’ve been assembled, which will be fascinating for your kids to watch.
Terrariums can be made using almost any glass container so, if you’ve got any old jars or glass bowls lying around, these will work perfectly.
When you’re planning to create terrariums with your kids, the most important thing is that you choose your plants carefully. You’ll want to pick varieties that like similar conditions: for example, succulents and cacti prefer a dry environment, while the likes of ferns and moss will need more water.
KidsGardening.org has a fantastic guide to creating a terrarium, which will walk you through all of the steps you need to take to create beautiful arrangements with your children.
Use fallen leaves for arts and crafts
When you want your kids to feel closer to nature, helping them to create art using fallen leaves could be a great idea. There are a number of ways in which you can do this, too. For example, you could all use leaves as stamps to make fun and beautiful paintings. Or, you might want to create abstract portraits by glueing the leaves down on a page.
For more inspiration, make sure you browse The Artful Parent’s list of 10 autumn leaf crafts for kids, where you’ll find plenty of other ideas.
Grow vegetables using kitchen scraps
If you want to teach your kids about living more responsibly, while also keeping them entertained, you can promote sustainability by showing them how you can grow vegetables using your kitchen scraps.
While this can take some time and effort, it’s well worth doing if you have a day to spare. Not only will it give you a fantastic opportunity to educate your little ones, but it could also result in you being able to grow the likes of celery, avocados, potatoes, and mushrooms. Your kids might even be more inclined to eat their greens once they know they can grow them at home!
If you want to learn more about growing vegetables from the scraps you would usually throw away, GardenTech has a wonderful article that outlines how all of the different types of veg need to be treated.
Plan your gardening projects for next summer
While it might be a few months before you get back out in the garden, there’s no reason why you can’t start planning what projects you would like to start once you do.
Consider sitting down with your kids to browse the internet for gardening inspiration. You could even look through catalogues of seeds and planters to decide what you would like your outdoor space to look like this summer. Not only will you and your children learn a lot about what kinds of plants are out there, but you’ll also be able to get excited for what you’ll get up to in the warmer months.
When you’re tired of spending so much time in the house but rain is preventing you from getting out in the garden, working on some indoor projects with your kids can be the perfect solution. Try some of the activities I’ve outlined here, and you’ll be sure to have plenty of fun!
Wyevale Garden Centres were originally set up by Harry Williamson, a Herefordshire nurseryman and pioneer in the garden centre world, in 1932.
They are now the biggest garden centre retailer in the UK, with over 100 garden centres throughout the UK.
More info: www.wyevalegardencentres.co.uk