When it comes to thinking of things to do that are cheap and accessible with the children, playing and planting in the garden is a great choice. Even though we don’t have the biggest outdoor space in the world, it is enough for us to get some fresh air, teach the kids about nature and seasons and for both us adults and children to relax. I like to spend a little time each year planning out my lawn care and gardening ideas, to make sure that we get everything out of our garden that we can! I’ve put together some ideas to create a lovely and safe garden (no matter what your space limits!) that will suit both kids and grown-ups.
My number one priority is keeping the garden a safe space for my children to explore in. It’s so important to be able to let them run around without that worry that they’ll hurt themselves. A fence is a great first step in child-proofing your garden, to make sure they don’t escape whilst you aren’t looking! If you’re considering a pond, I would probably advise against it. Not only are ponds costly and require a lot of maintenance, they are a risk to smaller children and older, unsupervised kids. A great alternative is a solar-panelled water feature, which will give you that water element and most children find them really entertaining to look at! High steps also present a potential danger, so if you can, try and level them out or reduce the height of any steps.
Grow Their Minds
Gardens are a fantastic place to teach your kids the amazing things that happen in nature. In our garden, we have a small planted area for them to experiment with. You can plant tulip bulbs from early October, so that they flower in the Spring, or get veggies on the go (pro-tip: Autumn is great for planting rhubarb!) This will teach children the responsibility of caring for plants and it will give all the family fresh vegetables and flowers to enjoy!
A sensory area is another great stimulation for growing minds. Why not build in wooden boxes filled with pebbles, sand, bark chips or other materials for them to get their hands in.
Lawn Care and Plant Tips
The lawn is the centrepiece of any garden, and for a family it’s great to have a flat, healthy and open lawn. I find it best to avoid any large trees or bushes in the centre of the lawn, as that can block your view of the children playing in the garden. Having a lush, green lawn is something for us grown-ups to enjoy and makes a beautiful setting for BBQs or entertaining friends. When it comes to lawn care, choosing fertilisers and a care plan can be complicated and costly. Hiring professionals to look after your lawn care can save you time and money. Greensleeves’ treatments are child-friendly, so you can rest assured that your kiddies aren’t picking up any nasty chemicals!
Your garden can also help you do your bit for the environment. You can find loads of easy guides online to make home-made bird feeders, which will keep those little hands busy and your garden birds happy. I know my children get really excited when they see birds snacking on the feeders that we’ve made together. I’ve also noticed a few guides on building hedgehog houses and planting wild flowers that attract bugs and wildlife, but we might not quite be at that craft level just yet!
*This is a collaborative post.