10 Best Plants for Kids That Are Easy and Safe to Grow

If you’d love for your child to spend a little more time outside and less time watching a screen, gardening is a great motivator. It’s one way you and your kids can spend more quality time together outside, and who doesn’t benefit from more time spent in nature? Plus, it’s just plain fun to see plants grow from a tiny seed or watch hummingbirds and butterflies visit your garden. That’s why we’ve rounded up these 10 best plants for kids that are incredibly safe for them to grow and very easy too.

Here are 10 of our favorite easy-to-grow plants for kids for you to try your hand at with your budding gardener.

1.Butterfly Bush

Long, spiky flowers in shades of red, white, pink, or purple on this hardy bush attract oodles of butterflies and hummingbirds all summer long. This shrub likes full sun and comes in a variety of sizes, from 24 inches to five feet tall, so read the plant label to make sure you give it ample space.

Varieties to try:

  • CranRazz
  • Pugster Blue

2. Nasturtium

These annuals with blue-green leaves and gorgeous flowers grow in climbing or mound forms. They come in an array of colors from peach and red to coral and rose and bloom all season until frost. But the coolest thing about both the flowers and the leaves is that they’re edible, so kids can toss them on salads and desserts.

Varieties to try:

  • Baby Rose
  • Peach Melba

3. Succulents

Succulents are super easy to grow, and they come in a rainbow of colors and hundreds of shapes and sizes! They prefer mostly sun, they’re drought-tolerant once established, and many types tolerate extreme cold. Some can be grown indoors as houseplants too.

Varieties to try:

  • Lemon Coral Sedum
  • Burro’s Tail

4. Pole Bean

Many different varieties of beans will climb up a trellis or bamboo poles lashed together to create a fort! Beans are incredibly easy to grow, and the more beans you pick, the more your plant will produce. Plant seeds in a sunny spot once the danger of frost has passed. Some types, such as the heirloom variety Scarlet Runner, attract hummingbirds too!

Varieties to try:

  • Seychelles
  • Scarlet Runner

5. Lamb’s Ear

This hardy perennial with an adorable name has velvety, silver foliage (that resembles lamb’s ears, of course!) and unique flower spikes. It’s not particularly fussy and tolerates drought and poor soil.

Varieties to try:

  • Big Ears
  • Cotton Boll

6. Pumpkin

Pumpkins take up a lot of space in the garden with vines that may stretch up to 20 feet long, although newer varieties are more compact. That’s a relative term though, as smaller types may still require about six square feet of space! But they’re awfully fun to grow because they come in every size and hue, from the palest white to bright orange. Plus, they’re versatile: Eat them, decorate with them, carve them, or roast the seeds.

Varieties to try:

  • Pepitas
  • Hijinks

7. Strawberry

Kids love picking bright berries and popping them into their mouths fresh off the plant. New ever-bearing strawberry varieties are pretty, compact plants that produce all season long and thrive in containers and hanging baskets. It’s possible to grow these from seed, but it takes time. Look for plants, which will bear fruit the first season.

Varieties to try:

  • Delizz
  • Berried Treasure

8. Cherry Tomato

Many tomatoes are actually long vines that require staking, but newer cherry tomato varieties have been bred to be compact and tidy so they grow best in pots. They’re also super sweet. Plant a few different kinds so you’ll have a rainbow of colors to harvest!

Varieties to try:

  • Goodhearted
  • Patio Choice Yellow

9. Sweet Alyssum

This lacy-looking annual plant has a sweet fragrance that’s easily carried on in the breeze. Pollinators love it! Plus, it’s a sturdy plant that looks wonderful cascading out of window boxes and hanging baskets alongside other plants. And because it can withstand a light frost, it lasts a long time in the garden.

Varieties to try:

  • Snow Princess
  • Dark Knight

10. Sunflower

These bold, sunny-faced flowers come an array of sizes ranging from a foot tall to 15 feet tall! Plant seeds directly in the garden or in pots in full sun after the last frost. Many types have large edible seeds you can enjoy with your kids, or share them with the birds!

Varieties to try:

  • Supersnack
  • Ring of Fire