By: Rachel Fix Dominguez
While it may seem overly ambitious to talk about gardening in March, it’s actually the perfect time to start growing seeds indoors in Buffalo. If you’ve never done so before, there are myriad resources at your disposal. The process–from selecting seeds to planting them in starter pots to watering them to transferring them to the ground (or containers)–is tons of fun for little ones, and really doesn’t require much to get started.
Urban Roots has a wide variety of seeds (such as locally produced Faerie Seeds from Richard Price) and other products to start your garden. They also offer parent/child workshops, including “Gardening With Children” on Saturday, April 10 at 10am. The Lexington Cooperative Market also has heirloom seeds available now.
Not sure what to grow? Why not turn the entire experience into an opportunity to do a little research about the soil and agricultural history of our area? Books such as “I Love Dirt,” “Let’s Go Outside” (both by Jennifer Ward) and “Blue Potatoes, Orange Tomatoes,” (by Rosalind Creasy) are in the catalog of the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library. Talking Leaves Books and Rust Belt Books also have child-oriented gardening books (to guide and teach both you and your kids, perhaps). Also check out Cornell University’s list of vegetable varieties that are well-adapted for home gardens in New York State.
The bottom line? Even if you’ve got limited outdoor space, there are ways to grow some beautiful and/or delicious plants this summer. And until spring weather is really and truly upon us (far be it from me to assume that the snow is gone for good and risk the wrath of the weather gods), it’s also nice to have a few tomato seedlings or fledgling pepper plants for your kids to tend to indoors.
So, my fellow Buffalonians, do you garden with your kids? What do you grow? Any good resources or tips to share?