Have you ever thought of starting a family vegetable garden? This family taco garden is a really fun idea to do together now and have taco ingredients all summer long!
Start a Family Vegetable Garden
As winter slowly turns to spring it is time to start thinking about more than just spring cleaning. Spring is a great time to get outside and enjoy nature. Why not get the whole family involved in a great spring project? Get the family together and start now planning a family vegetable garden.
Start a Family Taco Garden
If the idea of a full vegetable garden has you running for the hills, consider starting out smaller with a family taco garden. It’s a great way to get outside, stay active, work together as a family, and grow some yummy food for tacos.
Especially with kids involved, it’s important to keep gardening fun and interesting. A taco garden is a cool garden idea for kids because most kids are familiar with the types of foods you can grow. Plus, most of the plants needed are fairly easy to grow and maintain. Kid love to dig in the dirt and pull up plants (hopefully just the weeds!) and involving them in growing a garden will teach them not only about where food comes from, but how plants grow, and how to take care of them. The reward of patiently waiting to eat the food that they have grown themselves is unforgettable.
Getting Started with Your Family Vegetable Garden
It’s important to start planning your garden early, especially if you want to grow from seeds. Gather the family and come up with a list of things that you would normally put on a taco. Lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and peppers are all great starting points for a taco garden. Don’t forget herbs like cilantro (if you are genetically inclined to like it) and chives. If you have enough space, time, and money you can consider more exotic choices for fruit salsas such as a peach tree.
Be sure to research what gardening zone you are in as this will let you know when it is best to start planting. If you are starting seeds you can pick up a seeding tray at most stores or even just start then in some soil in paper cups. Have the kids pick their favorite veggie and/or herb that is their special piece of the project. Even young kids can push a few seeds into the soil and cover them. Starting seeds now will allow for enough growth for them to be planted outside when it’s warm enough. Have older kids water the seedlings, keeping the soil moist. They can make sure the seedling stay covered and in the sun. Try keeping a family journal or chart keeping track of how big and fast they grow! Get the kids to decorate popsicle sticks to label each plant.
Time to Head Outdoors
Once the plants are big enough and have been slowly acclimated to the outdoors, it’s time to plant them in their permanent homes! Study how much sun each plant needs and find the perfect spot for each variety. If you don’t have garden space for a full taco garden, that’s okay! Most of these can be grown in a pot. Get a bigger pot, making sure it has good drainage in the bottom, and plant taller plants like tomatoes in the center and low growing ones like lettuce around the edges.
Once the plants start to flower, there is an activity that is not only fun but can maximize your food output from your plants. It works best if you have more than one of each type of plant, but can help even if you have multiple flowers on a single plant. Get a small paintbrush like the ones that come in kids’ watercolors and gently brush the center each flower on a plant. Do this for each type of plant and if you have more than one of a type, go back and forth between the 2+ plants. This is helping your plants pollinate! The more variety of pollen the plants have, the more fruit they will produce! This is especially great for tomatoes and can yield huge crops.
Keep it Fun
Be sure you keep the kids engaged in the activities involved with growing a taco garden. Ask them questions about how the plant is changing. Get out the tape measures and see how big they are growing. Make sure to keep weeds away. Decorate your garden in a fun fiesta theme! Show kids how to deter pests naturally and to check that the plant is happy and healthy. Watering the plants is always a fun time!
In about two months, depending on your location and condition of the soil and plants, you should be able to harvest the first of your veggies and herbs. Show kids how to properly harvest the veggies without causing harm to the plant. Explain that even though you are picking these veggies, more can still grow.
The best part is enjoying the literal fruits of your labor from your taco garden. Older kids can help prep the veggies and most kids can put together their own tacos. Highlight the difference in store bought veggies versus homegrown. We all know homegrown tastes the best! Enjoy your Taco Tuesday with something different like Beef Barbacoa tacos and look back on all the time spent together and all the fun things learned. There is nothing better than a family activity that promotes outdoor activity and healthy eating.