We are starting our Winter Vegetable Garden with the kids and we would like to invite your “little gardeners” to grow along side us. We will be growing everything in containers from seed and seeds can be sown outdoors anytime from Late June to Early August.
Would You Like To Start Growing Your Own Winter Vegetables With The Kids?
If you would like to start a vegetable garden and teach kids how to grow their own food, why not follow along with us! I will be sharing everything we do, from planning & prepping to sowing, tending to and (fingers crossed) harvesting of the winter vegetables early next year.
If you would like to grow along with us…
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Now I’m going to try and answer some questions you may have!
When Do I Need To Start Planning My Winter Vegetable Garden?
You need to start planning and prepping your winter vegetable garden in the summer months, Late June – Early August time.
We are planning on sowing our seeds on the 2nd July. ( Watch it rain now!)
At the bottom of this post there are some handy checklists for grownups and little gardeners to help with planning.
What Vegetables Are We Growing For Winter?
This year our kids are growing the following winter vegetables:
- Brussel Sprouts ( These will not be part of the grow along as we are experimenting to see if we can grow them in containers.)
You can choose to grow just one of our winter vegetables or all of them and I will keep you regularly updated on what needs doing and when to do it for each.
Do I Need A Big Space To Start A Winter Vegetable Garden With Kids?
Nope, the great thing about growing veggies in containers is you don’t need to have a big garden.
Containers need to be placed in a sunny position, have a depth of at least 40cm and have plenty of draingage holes.
By growing all our vegetables in containers we have been able to create a vegetable patch for our kids in a small space in the garden.
Also as a side note, we find it’s a lot easier and more manageable when gardening with kids, to grow vegetables in containers/pots/bags. Some of the benefits of container gardening include, less weeding, easier pest control and no heavy digging.
What Do I Need To Grow Winter Vegetables In Containers?
To begin growing winter vegetables from seed you will need:
- A sunny spot in the garden / patio
- General Purpose Compost
- Seed Tray – With individual cells
- Watering Can
- Label sticks
Once seedlings are established you will need:
- General purpose compost
- Plant feed
- Plant pots *
*(Our containers are full of summer crops at the moment. We will have to pot up our seedlings into smaller plant pots before transferring into our containers after our summer harvest in August.)
Where do you buy your seeds from?
We purchase all our seeds from premierseedsdirect.com. The seeds are really good quality and low in price. Best of all, they give you a large quantity of seed which is a bonus when gardening with kids because there’s plenty left over if mistakes are made.
Here is our 2022 Winter Vegetable Seed List:
Kale – Red Russian Kale 2000 seeds for 99p.
Onions – North Holland Blood Red Redmate 1200 seeds for 99p.
Leeks – Heirloom Blue De Solaise 1500 seeds for 99p.
NOTE: If you want to buy seed from somewhere else, try and choose Dwarf Varieties for Brussel Sprouts and Kale.
What sort of container(s) will I need for growing Winter Vegetables?
Your container(s) must have:
- A minimum depth of 40cm
- Plenty of drainage holes
What containers do you grow your vegetables in?
For the past 6 years we have been growing vegetables in UV Protected, Re-cycled Plastic Containers. They are often found going for cheap or sometimes free on places like Facebook Market Place and Ebay.
The container dimensions are:
- 55cm length x 37cm width
- 40cm depth.
- We made 10 drainage holes around the sides and ends of our containers, near the bottom.
Depending on the size of your container you will most likely be growing 1 crop variety per container.
We will be growing 4 varieties in 5 tubs. 2x Kale, 1x Onion, 1x Leek and 1x Brussel Sprouts,.
I’ve shared with you below our set up to give you an idea.
Kale: We will have 1 kale plant to 1 container.
(Both the kids want to grow kale so we will have 2 plants in total taking up 2 of our containers)
Leeks: We will have 6 plants to 1 container. (This is our first year attempting to grow Leeks, so no photos to show.)
Onions: To begin with we will have 18 in 1 container. ( 6 bunches of 3). Then in Spring we will harvest 12 spring onions and leave the reamaining 6 to develop into a main crop onion.
What Else do You Recommend For Growing Vegetables In Containers?
A Good Quality General Purpose compost
We use Westland Gardener’s Multi-Purpose Compost because we find it has a nice moisture retention and it also breaks down nicely. (Check your local garden centre for deals. We often get a 3 for 2 offer at £15.00 for 60l bags)
NOTE: One of the negatives we often hear mentioned about container gardening is the cost of filling them up with compost. Yes, the initial investment can be costly depending on how many tubs you want to fill and we’ve found it best to gradually add extra tubs each year so it’s not as expensive. But it is an investment and at the end of the growing season we will show you how we turn our tubs and add nutrients to them so they are ready for the next growing season.
We use seedling trays with individual cells for sowing seeds. We find these slightly easier for children to use.
Slow Release Plant Feed
We use Westlands Gro-sure slow release plant food because it is much easier for the kids to use by themselves. We just sprinkle some in to their hands and they then feed the plants. It’s also much easier for us to remove if they over feed. Liquid chemical feeds can be difficult even for adults and over feeding will burn and kill plants.
How Much Winter Veg Will I Get When Growing In Containers.
The size of your harvest will depend on the amount of space you have and how much you grow. We do not get huge quantities but what we do get is small bounties of extreamley tasty home-grown veggies that make a nice treat.
When it comes to gardening with the kids, we are growing for the experience it offers them and not for a huge harvest. We want them to learn gardening skills and to enjoy the challenge of growing their own food. We try to keep things managable and as child-friendly as possible so that they can do all of the growing themselves.
Any other questions?
Hopefully this has answered any questions you might have about starting a winter vegetable garden with the kids. Feel free to comment or message me if you’ve got any questions!
I’m Ready To Start Growing Winter Veggies With The Kids. Where do I start?
If your ready to start, sign up below and I’ll make sure you receive updates on what we do and when we do it, along with some printable resources .
Alternatively, download and print out our Check list, gather together all the supplies and come back next week to read all about How To Sow Winter Vegetable Seeds With Kids.