Children in the garden Kings Garden and Leisure

Half-term gardening ideas

The 27th May 2023 marks the first day of National Children's Garden Week. A week designed to celebrate the fun that children can have in the garden, encouraging them to get outside and learn about gardening, growing, wildlife and the sheer joy of the garden. 

There are so many things for children to do in the garden, we have selected a few for you to have a go at over half-term. And if you do, please take pics and tag us in Facebook or Instagram so we can see what you've been up to. 


1. Flower Pressing

Head out to pick some colourful flowers (make sure it is in a place where you are allowed to pick them and don't pick too many!) 

Grab a book, open it about half way through and line the pages with newspaper, or kitchen roll always works well. 

Lay to flowers carefully onto the kitchen roll, making sure they are as flat as possible.

Close the book and weigh it down - more heavy books work well. 

Store in a warm, dry place and check on them every few days.

Once they are dry, carefully remove them and you can use them to create a picture or pop them in a frame. 


2. Make Wild Flower Bombs

Find a bowl that you don't mind having soil in, mix together 1 cup of seeds with 5 cups of compost and 2-3 cups of clay powder (you could use clay soil instead if you have it).

Wild flower seeds Kings Garden and Leisure

Slowly mix in water with your hands until everything sticks together.

Once its all stuck together, take a hand full and roll into a firm ball

Repeat until you have used all of your mixture.

Leave the balls to dry in the sunshine, once they are dry - throw them onto flowerbeds or open patches of earth. 

These are great to make and give to grandparents and friends too! 

You'll find all the seeds, compost and clay powder you need for this in store at either Exmouth or Sidmouth.


3. Grow Salad From Seed

Salad is a great food for children to grow from seed as it grows quickly and is perfect for growing in containers. 

Fill the bottom of the container with some stones to help the drainage.

Salad Leaves packet of seeds from Kings Garden and Leisure

Fill up the container with compost, leaving a about 4cm gap at the top.

Take little pinches of the seeds and scatter them all over the top of the compost.

Next, sprinkle a bit of compost over the top of the seeds and give them a good drink of water. And don't forget to label the container. 

Then, just keep them well watered and wait for the shoots which should appear within 1-2 weeks. 

Once the seedlings are a good size, the children can thin out any areas where there are lots growing in one patch so they can grow evenly.  

4. Create container displays

Take a trip to the garden centre, obviously we highly recommend Kings at Exmouth or Sidmouth!

Let the kids choose some plants, the more colourful the better. (Top tip - the agapanthus Black Jack was awarded RHS Plant of the Year 2023 and looks fabulous containers) 

Choose a container to plant them in, don't forget some stones for drainage in the bottom and the compost. 

And then its time for the children to get busy planting and creating their very own displays. 

5. Make a homemade bird feeder


Grab a plastic milk carton or large fizzy drink bottle, along with a couple of stocks for the perches, ideally these would be 20 - 25 cm long.

Make sure that the container is totally dry inside so that the seeds don't rot when you put them in. 

Bird feed from Kings Garden and Leisure

Make a hole in the lid and thread some string through, tie a knot in the end that is inside the container - this will be the hanger. 

Add the perches by cutting holes about 3cm from the bottom of the container at opposite sides so that you can thread the perches all of the way through from one side to the other.

Cut feeding holes that are around 3.5 - 5mm wide and 4 - 5 cm above the perches. (Top tip - Oval-shaped holes that are taller than they are wide will be easier for birds to feed on). 

Fill your container with seed, choose anything from sunflower seeds to nyjer or millet. 

Then hang the feeder and watch the birds come to enjoy it. 

We hope that you take a few of these ideas and have some fun in the garden this half-term. 

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