A group of four herb garden seedling plants in plastic retail containers. Purple basil, parsley rosemary, mint, basil thyme, and fennel, they are on a window sill ready to be planted.

Try a Container Garden!

Having trouble getting your kids to eat vegetables? One sure way to engage and teach young people about the importance of healthy eating is to show them how to grow their own food. Why not start with a container garden?

Your garden can be inside your home, in your backyard, or both. Container gardening makes it easy to grow and eat healthy food wherever you live.  You don’t need any fancy equipment. Read on and we’ll show you how easy it is. Did you know you can purchase seeds with your SNAP benefits?

Follow these easy steps and you’ll be able to watch your garden grow!

Pick your plant:

Will your garden be in a sunny spot outside? What do you want to grow? A salad? Lettuces, swiss chard, radishes, and green onions are all delicious and can be ready in a few weeks. Would you rather grow tomatoes? Cucumbers? Or beans? That will take longer but think of all the fun watching them grow! How about a mixture of both? You decide.

Potted tomato seedlings on a wooden table. Rustic style. Work inside the house.
Transplanting tomato seedlings into pots on a wooden table. Pots, expanded clay. Work inside the house.
Hands planting aromatic herbs in terrace.
A mother is gardening with her twin toddler sons on mother's day. Her elementary-age daughter is watering the plants with a watering can.
Various green herbs growing in pots in garden outdoors in sunny summer day. Hoticulture concept.
Small garden on a balcony of a block house at the European city. Vegetables and herbs growing in plant boxes and flower pots. Healthy and ecological food concept in the urban environment.

Select a container:

You don’t need planters. Just look at what you’ve already got. This is the perfect time to reuse an empty gallon milk container. Simply cut off the top. Or what about repurposing an old shoe box? Upcycle that empty soup or tomato can (just watch out for the sharp edges!). Add drainage holes or, if your unable to make holes for drainage add a layer of stones to the bottom.

Plastic bottles water DIY for planting vegetables plant and decoration at home, reuse and recycle concepts.
Paprika seedlings isolated on white background.
plants in plastic cups

Add potting soil and plant your garden:

After you’ve added potting soil follow the directions on the seed packet. You don’t want to plant the seed too deeply or plant too many seeds. Different plants have different needs to grow just like us. You want to make sure you get it just right! After planting place clear plastic wrap on top to hold in moisture. It will take between five and 10 days to see green tips poking through the soil.

Keep the soil moist but not too much:

It’s important to keep the soil moist but not to saturate it. Just like babies, your plants need a little extra care, in the beginning, to grow healthy and strong. The root system is young so depends on the water it receives. You also want to keep it in a warmer area and with enough sunshine to grow. Once it becomes growing your plant will be hardier, just like us!

Enjoy your garden and come back for more fun activities!

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