A survey of 2,000 parents commissioned by Hozelock as part of its ‘Gardening for Life’ campaign discovered that 60 per cent of children would rather play indoors on computer games than play in the garden.
Some 30 per cent of the parents admitted struggling to get their children to play outside in the garden, and revealed that their youngsters now spend less than two hours a week playing in the garden, compared to an average of nine hours on game consoles, PC’s and tablets.
TV gardener David Domoney, who is fronting the ‘Gardening for Life’ campaign to encourage children to get in the garden, said: "Youngsters are playing indoors much more than they used to a generation ago, and many spend nearly five times more time on computer games then playing outside.
"It’s so important for children to get out in the garden during the summer and get some fresh air and exercise, and if we’re not careful a whole generation will miss out on the joys of the great outdoors."
He added: "Despite these findings, there still is some hope that children will want to get out in the garden more this summer. Children love fun activities like sowing seeds, planting flowers, picking fruit and watering the garden.
"A lot of children said they would spend more time in the garden if they could help out with an activity, such as using a hose and watering the plants.
"Nowadays there are loads of kids gardening tools on the market which are ideal for little hands to use. Every child in the country should have their own personal patch of ground within their family garden.
Hozelock UK marketing manager Lisa Jordan added: "These results show the true extent of how technology has become more influential in our children’s lives.
'Whilst we recognise that gadgets do have a place in society, we feel it’s important children have a healthy balance when it comes to play. Our Gardening for Life campaign is all about encouraging as many people as possible to get into the garden and tempt youngsters to swap their gadgets for the great outdoors."