Gardeners' World presenter Francis Tophill shares her secrets for keeping kids entertained in the garden

Keep the children busy this winter with these simple gardening activities for kids

gardening actives for kids
(Image credit: Future)

Making sure the whole family enjoys some fresh air is a hard task in winter, made even harder by current circumstances. If you are looking for a little inspiration to get your children outside and entertained, Francis Tophill's gardening activities for kids will do the trick. 

The Gardeners' World presenter has long been passionate about getting young people involved in gardening. She has campaigned for school gardening and worked on a number of community gardening projects. 

Households across the country caught the gardening bug during lockdown. However, gardening isn't just for adults. There are plenty of garden ideas for kids to keep them entertained beyond simple mud kitchen ideas

Frances has teamed up with Higgidy family kitchen (opens in new tab) to share her top tips for getting little ones involved in gardening.

Francis Tophill

Gardeners' World presenter Frances Tophill

(Image credit: Higgidy)

1. Create an unusual veg patch

'Educate your little ones on the huge range of unusual veg that can be grown in your gardens,' says Frances. 

'I recommend Lemongrass as it can be easily grown or bought from the supermarket. If you keep the bottom part and place it in water it grows some fantastic roots which will be magical for children to watch grow.'

Gardening activities for kids

(Image credit: Future)

2. Create a scarecrow

'Fantastic fun for the whole family, why not create your very own scarecrow for your back garden,' suggests Frances. 

'Simply gather together twigs, sticks and old clothes to craft a scarecrow, a great project that the whole family can get involved with.'

3. Build a bug house

'Many children are fascinated by bugs and insects, so creating your very own bug house can be a great way for kids to learn about the many different species that are in the garden.'

'A quick and easy way to craft your own is to cut up some stems of bamboo and stick them in a bottle or box and wait for the magic to happen!'

Head over to our guide on how to make a bug hotel for more inspiration. 

gardening activities for kids

(Image credit: Future)

4. Grow some grass heads

'A classic crafting project, one I enjoyed myself growing up,' shares Frances. 'Simply cut holes in some old tights and sprinkle some grass seeds in the bottom and fill with potting mix.'

'Children will love watching these grow, as when the grass sprouts it'll look like hair. Kids can then decorate their grass head with anything they wish to create their very own garden friend.'

Join the gardening revival and get the whole family into the garden this year.

More ideas:

As the News Editor on Gardeningetc, Rebecca covers everything from the common mistake your making when pruning your roses, to handy tips about how to keep your houseplants alive. She has been covering all things gardening for two years across Homes & Gardens and Ideal Home. There isn't a single gardening trend that passes without her knowing about it. 


She's currently the proud owner of a thriving container garden on her small city balcony and a jungle of houseplants. Small gardens and container plants are her specialties.