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20 Easy Plants for Kids To Grow (with Pictures)

young girl planting in the garden

Gardening is a great way to get your kids outdoors while also encouraging them to eat their vegetables. By involving your child in the gardening process, they are more likely to enjoy nature and have respect for the world around them.

So that your child does not get discouraged during the gardening process, select kid-friendly plants that are easy to grow. Easy and fast growth will get your child excited since they get to see the fruits of their labor pretty quickly.

Here are 20 great plants to try and get your kids to grow!

garden flower divider

The Top 20 Easy Plants for Kids To Grow

1. Snap Peas

snap peas
Image Credit: Trygve Finkelsen, Shutterstock
USDA Hardiness Region 3-11
Sun 6–8 hours of full exposure
Placement Anywhere with full sun and good drainage

Snap peas are easy enough to grow, and they can encourage your child to eat more greens and vegetables. Snap peas produce juicy pods that last many weeks and grow rapidly.

They also have a sweet flavor that children love. Parents who grow snap peas report that their child loves popping a pod in their mouth while they are gardening, but you can also incorporate snap peas into salads and healthy meals.

Pros
  • Easy to grow
  • Grows fast
  • Delicious flavor
Cons
  • Requires full sun

2. Green Beans

green beans
Image Credit: pixel1, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 2–11
Sun 6–8 hours of full exposure
Placement Anywhere with full sun and good drainage

Even though green beans are a boring vegetable, for the most part, they are one of the most fun vegetables to grow. They grow fast and have high yields. For children, green beans are great because they do not grow super tall, and they have a satisfying snapping sound.

Not to mention, green beans are a favorite vegetable to incorporate into nightly dinners. They are easy to grow and taste good, and even if your child is not a green bean fan yet, they likely will be once they harvest their own.

Pros
  • Easy to grow
  • Easy for kids to harvest
  • Great for cooking
Cons
  • Requires full sunlight

3. Cucumber

cucumbers plants
Image Credit: Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 4–12
Sun Best in full sun but can grow with a minimum of 5 hours of sunlight
Placement Away from trees, well-drained areas

Cucumber is many children’s favorite vegetable. It has a mild flavor and can be paired with other tasty treats, like cream cheese and seasoning, which everyone loves. Cucumber is also a great vegetable to add to your child’s garden because they are easy to grow and grow prolifically.

You will need to plant a cucumber in well-drained soil. During the middle of the summer, use compost and water to fertilize the land and water the cucumbers about four times a week.

Pros
  • Easy to grow
  • A favorite snack
Cons
  • Needs to be placed away from other large plants

4. Sunflowers

sunflower
Image Credit: suju, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 4–9
Sun 6–8 hours of full exposure
Placement Around the shelter, like a fence, with a lot of room for growth

Sunflowers are some of the most beautiful flowers to look at. Despite their beauty, they are very easy to plant and care for. There are many varieties of sunflowers you can choose from.

Get your child involved in the entire process by allowing them to pick out the flower type. The sunflower will need to self-sow for one season, or you can plant them in the spring once you can work with the soil.

Pros
  • Beautiful
  • Self-sowing
  • Edible seeds
Cons
  • Requires full sun
  • Needs shelter from harsh winds

5. Marigolds

Marigolds
Image Credit: Marjonhorn, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 2–11
Sun Full sun to partial shade
Placement Anywhere with good drainage

Marigolds are gorgeous flowers that do not need the delicate hand of an experienced gardener. Most marigolds are different shades of yellow, gold, orange, and red, which makes them a gorgeous addition to any garden.

They also handle heat really well. Your child will be more than happy to plant marigolds so they can see pops of colors and pick bouquets for you and other friends and family members.

Pros
  • Beautiful blooms
  • Resistant to heat
  • Sturdy
Cons
  • Can mold easily

6. Snapdragon

snapdragon flower
Image Credit: Nick Pecker, Shutterstock
USDA Hardiness Region 7–11
Sun At least 6 hours of direct sunlight
Placement Sunny locations with rich, well-drained soil

Snapdragon is another flower that adds a pop of color to any garden. Their flowers have a yellow base that gently cascades into a hot pink color. They grow upwards and have a very sturdy stem.

Snapdragons are a great addition to your child’s garden because the plants themselves are sturdy. This means you don’t have to worry about your child accidentally destroying them in the process of planting or picking.

Pros
  • Beautiful
  • Tolerant to many conditions
  • Sturdy
Cons
  • Requires a lot of sunlight

7. Squash

squash on the ground
Image Credit: Innviertlerin, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 3–10
Sun At least 6 hours of direct sunlight
Placement Sunny locations with rich, well-drained soil

Squash is frequently considered the most fun vegetable to watch grow. These yellow vegetables grow with huge green leaves, vines, and blossoms that sprawl all out in all directions. This exhilarating scene is fun for children to watch.

Additionally, squash has a mild flavor that can easily be paired with butter and seasonings to make it delicious for your child. After they have watched this exhilarating plant spread all out, they will be ecstatic to eat the vegetable.

Pros
  • Fun to watch grow
  • Mild flavor that children can tolerate
Cons
  • Requires a lot of sunlight

8. Pumpkin

pumpkin
Image Credit: pixel2013, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 3–7
Sun At least 6 hours of direct sunlight
Placement Sunny locations with rich, well-drained soil

One of the most fun types of squash to grow is pumpkins. If you time the planting correctly, you can harvest your own pumpkin to carve a jack-o-lantern for Halloween. This will make growing pumpkins exciting from start to finish.

You want to plant your pumpkins 90–120 days before you intend to pick them. You will have to water the pumpkins frequently but also care for the surrounding areas to prevent any mildew from taking the pumpkins over.

Pros
  • Fun to watch grow
  • Can be used for Halloween
  • Delicious
Cons
  • Requires more care than other plants on this list

9. Calendula

calendula
Credit: HeikeFrohnhoff, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 9–11
Sun Full sun to partial shade
Placement Along the edge of the garden

Calendula is a type of flower that belongs to the Marigold family, but it isn’t the exact same flower that we mentioned above. These calendulas can add a pop of color to your salads. They can even be turned into oils, candles, soaps, and more.

It’s best to plant calendula during the fall if you live in a mild climate or the spring once the soil is workable. It’s a great idea to plant calendula with your vegetables because it prevents aphids. You will need to water calendula a few times a week.

Pros
  • Beautiful
  • Useful
  • Prevents aphids
Cons
  • Spreads quickly

10.Radishes

radish
Image Credit: Piqsels
USDA Hardiness Region 2–11
Sun At least 6 hours of direct sunlight
Placement Sunny locations with rich, well-drained soil

Radishes are unique plants that many people are fascinated with, especially children. They have a slightly spicy flavor that tastes great in salads, but they are delicious to dip in ranch dressing and other sauces.

Not to mention, radishes grow really fast. The plants can be harvested as soon as a month after planting. Because of how fast radishes grow, they are great to incorporate into your child’s garden.

Pros
  • Delicious to eat
  • Fast growers
Cons
  • Spicy flavor not loved by children

11. Cherry Tomatoes

cherry tomatoes
Image Credit: Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 3–10
Sun 8 hours of direct sunlight
Placement Requires an extra sunny spot

Full-sized tomatoes can be a bit tricky to grow, but this is not the case for cherry tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes are prolific and can grow in a variety of growing seasons. You can grow them outside or inside.

Not to mention, cherry tomatoes are familiar to children which will make the child excited to grow the plant. Your kid will love to taste the cherry tomatoes after they have been picked.

Pros
  • Familiar to children
  • Easy to grow
Cons
  • Require a lot of sunlight

12. Carrots

carrots plants
Image Credit: Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 3–10
Sun 6–8 hours of full exposure
Placement Deeply tilled land with a lot of water

Carrots are one of the first vegetables that children are introduced to, making them a favorite veggie among all children. In addition to the familiarity and taste of carrots, children love growing these vegetables because they can grow in many climates and are super easy to produce.

The trick to growing prolific carrots is to make sure you treat the ground right. It needs to be tilled deeply so that the carrot doesn’t have to overwork to grow downwards. You also need to make sure the carrots have enough sunlight without resulting in crusted soil.

Pros
  • Children love carrots
  • Easy to grow
Cons
  • Need good preparation

13. Berries

Aronia Berries
Credit: GoranH, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 4–8
Sun Full sun to partial shade
Placement Raised beds with good drainage

Berries are deliciously sugary fruits that are also healthy and nutritious. Because of the flavor of berries, they are a favorite among children and adults alike. Plus, they’re actually very easy to grow.

Strawberries are a great place to start. They don’t need a lot of space. You can plant them in rich soil in your yard or containers. You will need to water the strawberries frequently, but they will do the rest on their own.

Pros
  • Delicious
  • Many different varieties
  • Easy to grow
Cons
  • Require extensive watering

14. Borage

borage flowers
Image Credit: ioanna_alexa, Shutterstock
USDA Hardiness Region 2–11
Sun 6–8 hours of full exposure
Placement Organic matter with well-drained soil

Borage is a unique flower. It includes pale blue, star-shaped blooms and hairy buds. Because of this plant’s different appearance, it is a favorite among most children. It will grow quickly the first year you plant it, and it will return for years after.

Borage is a great plant if you want to create a pollinator paradise. The leaves taste like cucumber and attract bees and butterflies. One thing to note about borage is that it does not handle transplanting well. So, pick a spot and keep it there.

Pros
  • Beautiful
  • Attracts pollinators
  • Returns every year
Cons
  • Cannot be transplanted
  • Requires a lot of sun

15. Lettuce

lettuce being planted
Image Credit: Filmbetrachter, Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 2–11
Sun Full sun to partial shade
Placement Container with full sun

Not all children love lettuce, but it is a great vegetable to start growing and one of the easiest vegetables to farm. You can grow it outside or inside in containers. There are also a variety of lettuces to choose from.

Hopefully, growing lettuce with your children will encourage them to eat more salads. Although the flavor won’t be any different, the process of watching the lettuce grow will encourage your child to try out the vegetable they have nurtured.

Pros
  • Easy to grow
  • Can be grown inside
  • Grows fast and consistently
Cons
  • Many children don’t like lettuce

Related Read: What Is Organic Gardening? What Are The Pros and Cons?


16. Kale

kale
Image Credit: Piqsels
USDA Hardiness Region 7–9
Sun 6–8 hours of full exposure with options of shade in hot environments
Placement Pair with other veggies

Kale is far from being a favorite treat among children. Still, don’t be afraid to incorporate kale into their garden. Your child is more likely to eat the nutritious leafy vegetable if they grew it themselves.

Although kids may not like the flavor of kale, it certainly has beautiful leaves that are exciting to pick. Make sure to plant kale in the shade and check the leaves to determine if it needs more water. If the kale is really tough, the plant needs more watering.

Pros
  • Easy to grow
  • Fun colored leaves
  • Edible
Cons
  • Some children do not like kale
  • Needs careful watering

17. Zucchini

Zucchini plant
Image Credit: Piqsels
USDA Hardiness Region 3–9
Sun 6–8 hours of full exposure
Placement Moist ground with a lot of space

Zucchini is another squash variety that is loved by children. Just like the squash mentioned above, zucchini grows outwards and includes flowers and big leaves. This growing process makes zucchini exciting to watch grow.

There are also tons of ways to use zucchini. They are delicious to eat alone, but you can incorporate them into bread and other dishes to trick your child into eating greens.

Pros
  • Easy to grow
  • Fun growing process
  • Many recipes available for zucchini
Cons
  • Needs a lot of space to grow

18. Viola

Viola
Image Credit: Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 3–8
Sun Full sun to partial shade
Placement Moist soil with a lot of nutrients

Violas are beautiful flowers that are actually incredibly easy to grow. They are a favorite for children’s gardens specifically because of the easy growing process, beautiful appearance, and nontoxic petals. In fact, Viola flowers are edible, which means you do not have to worry about your child consuming the flower.

Some people even like to use Viola plants in their salads. It will add a pop of color and a unique flavor. The flowers can be used as a garnish or blended into frozen drinks for the summer.

Pros
  • Beautiful
  • Easy to grow
  • Edible
Cons
  • Soil requires compost

19. Nasturtiums

nasturtiums
Image Credit: Pixabay
USDA Hardiness Region 4–8
Sun Full sun to partial shade
Placement Outsides of garden

Nasturtiums are gorgeous flowers that will add a lot of color and personality to the garden. The plant includes vase-like flowers and lily pad-like leaves. This flower is great for a whimsical, fairytale-like garden because of its appearance and growth pattern.

Plus, this flower actually keeps aphids away. Plant them around your garden to help keep all unwanted pests far from your plants. If you don’t have a large garden, this flower can be planted in containers as well.

Pros
  • Beautiful
  • Prevents aphids
  • Can be grown in containers
Cons
  • Spreads quickly

20. Herbs

different herbs grows in glass jar
Image Credit: ktkusmtku, Shutterstock
USDA Hardiness Region 3–11
Sun Full sun to partial shade
Placement Containers

Herbs are super easy to grow, and they can make your food taste delicious. Whether you have a large garden or a small patio space, you can plant herbs anywhere. You can even grow herbs inside in a container, which is recommended.

There are many herbs you can consider. Some of the most popular include sage, mint, and parsley. Just make sure there is enough shade and water, and your herb will flourish.

Pros
  • Delicious
  • Easy to grow inside
Cons
  • Cannot tolerate high temperatures

garden flower divider

Kid-Friendly Garden Tips

Whether you select some of the plants from the list above or select plants from elsewhere, here are some kid-friendly gardening tips to create the best garden for your child:

Have Your Child Involved From The Beginning

Always make sure that your child is involved in every step of the growing process. This will get them excited about the plan, but it will also teach them the importance of responsibility and respect for the world around them.

You can involve your child from the beginning by having them decide which plants they want to grow. That way, they will feel that the plants are their own and not something they are forced to do. Every time you go to maintain the plants, take your child with you and make sure they are there whenever you harvest.

family gardening at the backyard
Image Credit: Halfpoint, Shutterstock

Select Non-toxic Plants

If you are creating a kid-friendly garden, make sure all plants in the garden are non-toxic. Even if you add other plants that your child is not helping with, make sure they are not toxic for your child to be around.

The reason for this is that your child may forget that they are only supposed to pick one or two plants. If you put other plants that are toxic inside the garden, they may accidentally consume the plant not realizing that it is dangerous. Luckily, there are tons of non-toxic plants you can incorporate into your garden.

Select Plants That Grow Quickly

Children get distracted and bored easily. To ensure this doesn’t happen with the garden, only select plants that grow quickly and interestingly. This will keep your child captivated and excited to see what the next day will bring.

Select Plants That Are Sturdy

Children often do not realize how strong they can be. Consequently, delicate plants are no match for children. To ensure that your plants don’t get trampled on by your kids, select plants that are sturdy and strong.

garden flower divider

Conclusion

Teach your child to love plants, nature, and gardening by creating a kid-friendly garden that they can help you with. Any one of the twenty vegetables above is a great choice to add to your child’s garden because they are beautiful, easy to grow, and fun to harvest.

See Also:


Featured Image Credit: A3pfamily, Shutterstock

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