The hint of warmth in the air suggests Spring is coming. The change of season offers so many opportunities to get your little sprouts outside, observing and participating in the world they live in as it comes awake.
The benefits of getting dirty and turning the earth are enormous for kids. Lessons and experiences with colors, counting, textures, the effects of what goes into the body, family interaction, nurturing growth, responsibility, the reward of creation, math, consumerism, life cycles, self-sufficiency and the farm to table cycle abound.
When we think of gardening, a city not always the first place that comes to mind. But cities bring an innovation to gardening by mixing natural settings in with our dwellings and structures.
City living lends it self to a ton of ways to participate in gardening; we have backyards, flower boxes, community gardens, school gardens, farmers markets, balconies, sidewalk planters, rooftop gardens, and state and city parks. Here are a few of the abundant resources available in Northwest Philadelphia:
Chestnut Hill Growers’ Market
Church Lane Community Center
Germantown Kitchen Garden
Old Tennis Court Farm
Mt. Airy Farmers Market
Mastery Charter School Community Garden
Penn Knox Garden
In addition to these resources, the bright banners of the Philadelphia International Flower Show are all over town right now, announcing the onset of the season with color. This Sunday, the Flower Show hosts Family Day with family friendly lectures and demos, Sprout TV characters, and a visit from the Lorax with Kathy O’Connell from XPN’s Kids Corner in the Family Lounge.
Philadelphia is truly wealthy in environments available to engage in gardening. The basil in our pesto may come from a farmer selling at the market down the street. The tomatoes in your salad may come from the garden on your roof that also helps to insulate your house. Examples of urban gardening surround us, so tell us, how does your family garden?