Parent Survival Guide Parent Survival Guide Issue 02 (Spring) - Page 15

• How would the main character veer in your world?

• Is there another ending you could see?

• What might this book say about current issues?

A garden

The psychological benefits of gardening are well proven. It can offer a source of respite even if it doesn’t add food to your table, so why not build a garden with your kid(s)? Your younger kid(s) will marvel as their garden crosses each threshold, while older ones may enjoy instructing you on how to tend to their crops in between parenting times. We guarantee everybody will learn something, have some laughs and perhaps experience the delight of picking a homegrown 'something' for dinner. Even if you have zero experience, our tips should help you skip right to the benefits of making the most of those few hours together.

Everyne will learn something, laugh and enjoy.

While you can readily pick containers of ready-to-grow herbs, you can also put some soil in any pot and plant regular produce: find bunches of dill, parsley, cilantro or green onion with roots on, or plant a regular brown onion and get ready to chop fresh green onion onto your omelets.

What you will need:

• A pot, at least 3” deep: retire a dying plant, go to Good Will, reuse a veggie

tray or get creative and cut (and decorate) the top of a milk carton

• Potting mix: pick up at most stores

• Roots-on herb bunches and/or regular brown onion(s)

Ask at your local nursery/home improvement store what you can reasonably grow at your home, have your kids pick favorites from your shortlist, then buy seedlings together. In most climates lettuce, spinach, beets and raddish should grow in pots. In warmer and sunnier locations, add tomatoes, string beans and peppers. In cooler climates, keep your potted treasures indoors for a few weeks. But even one tomato plant in a pot will probably delight your kids! Notch it up and have them name it!

What you will need:

• Pot(s) or tray(s), at least 9”/23cm deep (ideally 12”/30cm+)

• Potting mix: pick up at most stores

• Seedlings

• A garden spade (or a spoon)

If you are lucky enough to have attention to detail, consider growing something from seeds. While lettuce, spinach and herbs can be sown directly into the soil outside, most veggies will take 1-2 weeks of daily moisturizing to sprout in gauze before being ready to plant into small containers for another couple of weeks of daily indoor monitoring. But it is worth it! As very few things compare to the joy of seeing the fragile first leaves break through the soil. Once your seedlings are strong and outgrowing their interim container, go to the steps above and tend to them until harvest.

What you will need:

• Saucer(s) or equivalent, dedicated to one type of seeds

• Gauze (approx. a square foot per saucer)

• Seeds, approx. a dozen per saucer

• Small containers: individual yogurt (washed) will do

• The supplies from the 'medium difficulty' list above

Easy: herbs

Medium difficulty: seedlings

Use this spring break to start growing something together, and the produce may be the least of the fun you have together.

A challenge: grow from seeds

spring 2017 PSG 15