Does the cold and damp springtime weather have you quarantined indoors and aching to tend to your fledgling garden as an escape from the also-quarantined kids? Or do you just want to give your brood a non-dirty primer in gardening? Here’s an attractive rainy day option: Gardening Mama, a new video game for Nintendo DS.

As reported by the New York Times, video game manufacturer Majesco Entertainment, maker of the best-selling Cooking Mama franchise, is marketing Gardening Mama ($30) as the first garden-oriented video game.

This semi-Luddite dropped off the video game radar in 1991 so I can't imagine what gardening on Nintendo entails. I took a look at the GM website and I’m still clueless … so much for trying to tame my video game ignorance. The website does reveal that GM features gameplay similar to Cooking Mama where players nurture 37 different varieties of flowers, fruit trees, and vegetables. When pretend harvest time comes around, you can put the fruits of your labor in a “Cute Treasure Chest” and trade them with other players online. The sartorial-minded can also dress Mama up in various gardening ensembles. The GM website also has a “Go Green” section with a list of basic eco-living tips and other features.

This is obviously a game marketed to the young lady set making it a good tool for greenthumbed parents frustrated with cooped up kids. While waiting for April showers to pass, play GM along with the glassy-eyed rugrats until the weather allows for lessons in non-pretend gardening. With Michelle Obama’s much-publicized gardening efforts renewing interest in horticultural activities, it’s the perfect time to hide the video games that involve car theft and human slaughter and teach the youngin's a lesson in self-sufficiency.

And if you’re an adult gamer who also enjoys real gardening, Garden Mamma could be a nice, brainless distraction on a rainy Sunday afternoon. 

Via [NYT]

Image: Assassin10k

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Nintendo-grown tomatoes
Hort-curious kids and greenthumbed kids at heart may get a hoot out of the new Nintendo DS game, Gardening Mama.