Plants and gardening offer countless mental, physical, and emotional health benefits, no matter your age. But kids, in particular, can learn so much from plant care — the benefits span from sensory, motor, and cognitive to social, mental, and emotional. Depending on your child’s age, helping plants grow can help them develop essential skills, including communication, following directions, working with others, asking for or providing help, and more.
Most importantly, plant care is fun! And that’s something we could definitely use more of in 2021. In this article, we’ll provide you with the criteria for selecting plants for kids to grow, and we’ll also share our favorite kid-friendly plants to bring your children’s gardening ideas to life.
What to Look For in Types of Plants for Kids
When it comes to selecting indoor houseplants for kids, not all plants are created equal. The plants you bring into your home should be safe, size-appropriate, relatively easy to grow, and, depending on your kids’ age, non-toxic (a plus for your pets, too!).
You should also consider your child’s unique interests when selecting a plant for them — the right botanical can pique their interest for longer periods of time. For example, our Edible Garden collection is great for the budding home chef, while our Grow-How Kit is perfect for any young one who’s enamored by their science classes.
Plants for Kids That Are Educational, Safe & Fun
The low-maintenance Philodendron Heartleaf is a great non-toxic indoor plant for adults and children alike. These hardy plants are fast-growing, easy plants for kids to grow, and incredibly adaptable so they can certainly handle whatever any eight-year-old throws at them. Plus, these trailing plants are eye-catching and fun to style — a great choice for the young creative!
For the child in your life who’s easily bored, try a vegetable plant. They’ll get a kick out of watching the veggies grow and develop over time, and can even help mom or dad prepare dinner once they’re ripe. With its bright red fruit, our micro tomato plant is an excellent choice by demonstrating the importance of eating fresh vegetables.
For the promising home chef that insists on helping with dinner, a great plant activity for kids is to have them grow their very own herbs at home. They’ll love sprinkling their homegrown basil, oregano, or parsley over dinner each night.
What could be more entertaining than growing tropical fruit in your living room? Kids will love watching their Bromeliad Pineapple plant progress through each stage of growth, and they can enjoy the fruits of their labor once ripe (literally!).
For those fascinated by the science behind plants, stoke their interest with a Grow-How Kit. Each set comes with a small Philodendron Heartleaf plant, a Speckl propagation kit, downloadable plant coloring cards, and an exclusive plant care workshop led by Plant Mom Joyce Mast and her grandchildren.
For kids that are a bit younger, consider our Jack Frost succulent trio. These textural plants are low-maintenance, kid-sized, and squishy to the touch. Younger children will enjoy exploring the various leaf shapes, patterns, and textures.
Put your little one in charge of watering your tallest, most prominent plant in your home, and they’ll swell with pride. A large Bird of Paradise is easy to care for, stylish (for your benefit), and can grow up to eight feet tall!