Engaging Kids to Garden

Story Title: Engaging Kids to Garden
Episode: Five.
Date: 3rd April 2010
Presenter: Lilly Van Epen

Easter is a great time to get the kids involved in gardening projects. Lilly finds out what kids gardening projects the Royal Botanic Gardens of Sydney support, and also shows how to build a worm farm.

Featured Topic

  • The Royal Botanic Gardens offer regular kid workshops on many gardening topics. They range from propagating, produce, bush tucker gardens, native birds and wildlife workshops.
  • Another great kid's project you can do at home is building a worm farm. Worm farms are a great way to turn you kitchen scraps into rich fertilizer in a few easy steps. It's quick, easy, fun and cheap!
  • Go to your local fruit shop and ask if you could have two enclosed polystyrene boxes, one with a lid. They are usually more than happy to give them away. Just poke at least 20 small holes in the bottom of one box and put the lid on. Place this box on top of the other.
  • Collect enough shredded paper, leaves and compost to reach a depth of 10-15cm to give the worms a nice bed.
  • Add the composting worms! These are different to earthworms. Composting worms are tiger worms or red wrigglers. We want to keep them moist and dark, so put some damp hessian or newspaper over them.
  • We need to let the worms burrow and get comfortable before we can feed them. We can then gradually start adding a few small kitchen scraps on top of the newspaper. Worms don't like onion breath either, so don't feed them anything from the onion family. They also don't like citrus or dairy. They can eat meat but it can lead to your worm farm smelling.
  • After a week or two, you can lift up the top box and collect all the organic rich liquid fertiliser from the bottom one. Just dilute it with water, about 1 part ‘worm tea' to 9 parts water. Water your garden with this and you'll see amazing results in no time.
  • Children are fascinated by worms. Building a worm farm is a great way for them to learn about organic recycling and helping the environment.

Royal Botanic Gardens of Sydney
Mrs Macquaries Road
Sydney NSW 2000
Phone: (02) 9231 8111