grandchild, Sophie, is four years old and she has been helping in
the garden since she was two.
has set radish and sunflower seeds in the ground level and the slightly
raised beds. She enjoys using different tools, particularly those
that are especially made for her.
we encourage her, we are careful not to push it too far so she loses
the sense of fun and fulfilment.
filled her planter with primroses and primula.
also provide her with seeds and plants that she can manage.
time we'll graduate to more difficult tiny seeds which will be a
challenge but should grow.
planter she uses is 24 inches circumference at the top and 18 inches
deep. It sits on four single bricks, placed edgewise to form a cross.
brings the planter's height to 22.5 inches - perfect for Sophie.
planter is half of a 45-gallon barrel used to import fruit juices.
cost between £2 and £5 each.
fixed a yellow plastic hoop to the outer rim of the top edge of
rim was a little rough and would have been uncomfortable for her
wrists and arms.
hoop also makes the planter look more jolly and it adds to the sense
of fun for Sophie.
planter has a 1¼ inch diameter hole through the bottom, to which
I've fixed a 3-inch long piece of plastic pipe which goes upwards
in the planter.
is topped with a piece of fine gauze and covered with pebbles, creating
a water table for the hot, dry weather while providing drainage.
weeds her planter using her own adapted tool.
this picture Sophie is weeding the plants.
tool she is using was made by pushing a piece of insulation pipe
onto an aluminium tent peg to make a soft handle.
peg had first been wrapped around with vinyl tape to take off the
edges and prolong the life of the insulation pipe.
wife, Barbara, has encouraged Sophie to get the weeds up with roots
is delighted to have her own special tool.
shows how easy it is to use the retriever.
other grandchild Solomon is six years old, and unlike Sophie, he
is yet to show much interest in the garden.
Solomon is fascinated by my tool collection and loves to experiment
with many of them.
is intrigued with the gripping tools, using them as space-guns or
knows he has to treat the tools with care, and so we encourage him
to experiment with them.
Solomon likes to demonstrate that he can also use the tools in the
same ways as grandad!
helps her nanny to pick potatoes.
has been helping to collect vegetables from the garden since she
is a very good potato picker. She first picks all the tubers and
then discards the damaged ones.
are put into a pail with other discarded vegetables and later cooked
for our chickens.