Top 5 Best Chooks for Kids

Guest Post written by Sarah-Jayne McCreath from Backyard Chicken Coops.
Chickens make the best pets for your growing children. A flock of chooks provide love, a sense of responsibility and teach our kids the importance of compassion and care. They are super cute and affectionate and make great backyard pals for toddlers to teenagers and all in between. If you want your kids to have the best when it comes to pets – check out our top 5 breeds to choose for your kids below and get cluckin’ on that family flock!   Continue reading

Guest Post – Straw Bale Gardening

In this Guest Post, Tracey Sidwell from Bale Grow talks about straw bale gardening.  I have read about this concept but had never actually seen it in action. That was until I met Tracey and saw for myself her fabulous straw bale gardens.
I often get asked what is the best way for kids to have a vegie patch in a rented property, I think straw bales may be about the perfect solution.
xx EricaHaybale blog
Straw Bale Gardening with BaleGrow
As a mum, nothing makes me happier than seeing my kids eat fresh veggies; especially when they can pick them straight from our garden. With almost no gardening experience and limited space, the kids and I have had a ball with our straw bale garden. I figured lots of other families would love this just as much, which is how BaleGrow was born. Continue reading

Guest Blog – Children's Safety in the Garden

mackenzies garden 2
The garden Mackenzie has created with her children
Today’s guest blog is by Mackenzie Fox. She is a young mum of a six-year old boy and a two-year old girl; she loves gardening and all things green. Mackenzie has shared some very thoughtful ways to keep our little green thumbs safe in the garden.
My husband and I introduced our children to gardening early. We believed it was going to teach them about plants and other forms of life, the importance of sustainability, the environment, and keeping the carbon footprint low much more than any biology course would. They would learn how to grow their own vegetables and would keep them away from the temptation of spending their entire lives behind laptops or televisions. Continue reading

Guest Post: 7 Reasons Why Your Family Should Have Chickens

Chickens make a great additiesion to famil
Today’s guest post is written by the talented and inspirational Laura Trotta from Sustainababy. Laura’s family has recently adopted three chickens and her children are reaping the benefits of having them in the garden. Here she shares with us seven reasons why your family should consider having chickens. Continue reading

Guest Post: A Space to Have Fun, Learn and Grow – Creating the Perfect Garden for the Kids, Part 2

Trampolines are popular in kids gardens
Here is part two in our series on designing the perfect kids garden written by professional garden designer Helen Spry from Ezyplant. Helen is a mother of two very active boys and has been a domestic garden designer for 10 years. In this post Helen looks at equipment that can be added to a kids garden to encourage imagination, play, relaxation and exercise.  To see part one where Helen discusses matters relating to productive gardens, turf and paths for kids click here.
Trampolines provide hours of fun and physical activity and are available in a range of sizes.  Apart from the physical benefits they can also be used for reading and doing homework.  A quiet outdoor classroom provides a wonderful space for learning and can be helpful for remembering spelling words or math sums.  Jumping on a trampoline or bouncing a ball while saying the word/sum out loud can make all the difference in retaining information for some children.  Give it a try!
Sandpits provide a creative space and will guarantee hours of play.  The bigger the better especially if you are catering for more than one child.  Essentially a 3m X 3m size pit will allow 2 children to play happily.  If your garden allows, consider a huge pile of dirt for hours of fun digging, making mud pies and creating cities with roads and houses.  Continue reading

Guest Post: A Space to Have Fun, Learn and Grow – Creating the Perfect Garden for the Kids, Part 1

Helen Spry - domestic garden designer
Today’s first guest post, in a two-part series, is by domestic garden designer Helen Spry.  A mother of two very active boys, Helen has been a domestic garden designer for 10 years.  She operates a garden design consultancy business, Eco Garden Design Pty. Ltd., and an online garden planning website.  Greatly influenced by her great-grandfather and grandfather, who were both garden designers in their time, she has had the advantage of a lifetime of learning.  Her passion and immense interest in domestic design led her to establish, a D.I.Y. garden planning website for the home gardener.  
As parents we can struggle to balance our lives with the added pressure to keep a healthy balance in our children’s lives.  With technology so accessible, it can be an easy option at the end of a long day to give in to their requests.
Imagine coming home and having your children racing to get into the garden!  Here’s some important design elements you can incorporate into your garden to entice your children away from technology. Continue reading

Guest Post: Worm Farms for Kids

Worm Farms for Kids by Mackenzie Kupfer
Mackenzie shares with us her tips on worm farming for kids.
Mackenzie Kupfer has been a lover of all things green since the age of six when she began gardening with her Nana. She is currently an online publisher for the provider of flower gardening supplies, Avant Garden Decor. In her free time, Mackenzie enjoys attending garden shows, hiking, and collecting ceramic tea sets.
Some gardeners take their craft so seriously that they forget the beauty of allowing children to help in the garden. If you are too uptight about your garden, it can create an unpleasant experience for both you and your kids. The trick is to make gardening an enjoyable experience for everyone involved. For kids to enjoy gardening, you need to work to make it fun for them and what is more fun than getting dirty?
Aside from helping you dig holes, the best way to let your kids get dirty is to involve worms. Kids love to play with worms and worms are great for your garden so it’s a win win! You can send your kids on a worm finding expedition and have them count the worms that you dig up while gardening. If you want to take it a step further, you can start a worm farm with your kids. Worm farms are great because you can turn your table scraps and yard debris into nutrient rich compost for your garden and a nice home for worms. It is also something that can be done year round. Continue reading

Guest Post: A Sweet Pea Tee Pee for Saint Patrick's Day

Narelle Debenham from Natured Kids
Narelle from Natured Kids explains how to build a sweet pea tee pee.
Today’s guest post is from Narelle Debenham, founder and director of Natured kids, a weekly outdoor playgroup for families and young children on the Mornington Peninsula. Narelle, registered teacher and mother of three boys, aims to have a positive impact on children’s lives, while deepening their connection with and understanding of our natural environment. For a free checklist of outdoor activities to inspire nature play with your children visit Natured Kids.
Sweet Pea Tee Pee - fun for kids
Build your own sweet pea tee pee with the kids this Saint Patrick's Day.
St. Patrick’s Day marks the time of year when sweet pea seeds like to be planted in our gardens. Forty children from the Natured Kids outdoor playgroup planted these sweet peas to make a living, scented, sweet pea tee pee to play in at the Groundswell Community Garden in Frankston.
To make your own tee pee with the kids in your garden you will need: Continue reading

Guest Post: How to Create a Rubbish Garden

Chloe Marchbank is enjoys teaching her children about the environment and recycling.
Today’s guest post is written by Chloe Marchbank, a freelance writer and mum to three daughters. Chloe is passionate about teaching her daughters about the importance of caring for the environment and religiously recycles whatever and whenever she can.
Now, I know that on reading the title of this article, you’re probably thinking, “Why on earth would I want to make my garden look rubbish? Surely, I’m after tips on how to make it look nicer?” Well, before I go on any further, let me explain myself – because, when I use the term ‘rubbish’, I am in fact referring to using old household items to make your garden not only look nicer, but to also make it more eco-friendly – with the help of your children!
Your children are bound to love getting involved with helping you make these creations for your garden, and what’s more, it’ll also teach them the importance of recycling old items to help and do something positive for the environment around them. Continue reading

Guest Post: Powerful Life Lessons Through Gardening

Tara Force
Tara writes about the many lessons that can be learned through gardening.
Today’s guest post is written by Tara Force from MUMmedia and Modern Homeschool Today. Tara is a passionate mother, writer and modern day homeschooler. She writes about the impact of popular culture on parenting and childhood,  inspiring parents to ask questions and find the parenting style that is right for them even when it goes against the flow. 
Just recently I discovered a seedling growing under my lemon tree. Not knowing what it was I pulled it out and a few days later two more seedlings appeared. I decided to consult my friend Google and was surprised to discover that without planting anything in that soil, pumpkins were growing in my backyard!
I was a bit excited and immediately got the kids to come and have a look. We have all been amazed that within four short weeks they have grown from a tiny seedling to THIS: Continue reading