Gardening club keeping kids busy during COVID-19

WINNIPEG — With the weather heating up, and COVID-19 restrictions in place, a lot of people are using the extra time at home to grow gardens, and one gardening club is looking to get kids involved.

Garden guru’s Sheilah Restall and Shayna Frejuk are co-founders of The Little Green Thumbs Children’s Gardening Club, it teaches kids about gardening and all the life skills that go with it.

Restall said they wanted to find an activity kids could do at home while in lockdown.

“With everything that’s happening with the pandemic, and knowing there wasn’t a green club for children here in Manitoba, I wanted to see if we could make one,” said Restall.

The Little Green Thumbs Club gives out green kits to families with children so they can learn about gardening; the kits come with pots, soil, gardening tools, and two different types of seeds.

The website has weekly updates so parents and kids can get help with their plants as they grow.

“I wanted everybody else to have that opportunity to experience growing your own food, and just the joy that comes along with it,” said Frejuk. “There’s definitely a sense of pride knowing you took this from a seed to something you can cook and eat.”

Sage Garden Greenhouses is one of the sponsors who donated items for the green kits.

Co-owner, Dave Hanson said gardening is a lifelong skill set, and the whole process can be a lot of fun for kids.

“It’s really exciting for kids to be able to suddenly connect with the idea, ‘I grew this food’ or ‘I grew that oregano that we put on our pizza tonight and it added all that flavour,’” said Hanson. “It really connects the dots, so I think that’s a huge thing when it comes to kids and gardening.”

Hanson said most kids don’t know where their food comes from, and gardening helps them to understand how it all works.

Frejuk said starting a garden in your own backyard is really easy.

“Anybody can do it, it just takes a little bit of patience, and love, and knowing what right conditions you need your plants to be in to have them thrive.”

Restall said there are a limited number of green kits, but the website will have a list of what to buy if people want to build their own.

“Shayna will be making sure everyone knows how to do stuff,” said Restall. “I’ll be helping to get it up on the website so that everyone, even the people who are far from green thumbs, can figure out how to make these plants grow.”

The green kits will be available for pick up on June 5th, and you can sign up for a one on their website.   

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