Monday, 21st October 2019
GARDEN Article
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This Month's Magazine
Childs play - creating a child's garden

Childs play - creating a child's garden

"Seen through the eyes of a child, a garden is a magical place full of secrets, surprises and precious treasures" says Renaldo this month.

One - A natural informal design with concealed pathways and mysterious corners, has far more allure for a child than a formal, modern design with rows and lines.

Two - Allow space for playing games and running around. This may mean dedicating more space to a lawn, but as the children grow, the grass area can be reduced.

Three - Consider access for bikes and space for a slide or swing. These should be positioned where they can be used safely and easily.

Four - Make the small details count, like laying out paving slabs in a Hopscotch pattern.

Five - A Wendy house should be more than just a garden shed with curtains, use your imagination!

Six - Don’t be afraid to introduce elements of fantasy, Fairies, Gnomes and other garden creatures can be used to encourage children to create their own fantasy world.


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Growing for the table
Put aside space for your child’s very own garden to encourage a love of growing things. Vegetables that are ideal for children to grow are small cherry tomatoes, Lettuce, Spinach, Radishes, Beetroot, Carrots and Beans. Children may also like growing colourful annuals like Zinnias, Marigolds and Vinca as they take very little effort. This is the time to introduce children to herbs, encourage them to pick the herbs and use them in the kitchen, educating them in the wonderful flavors herbs add to food and of course teaching them at the same time about the health benefits of different herbs.

Variety
Variety is very important, choose flowers, herbs and vegetables with interesting shapes, texture, fragrance and colour. Plants with aromatic leaves children can rub give particular pleasure. Consider scented Pelargonium, Lavender, Rosemary and Lemon Verbena.

Safety
Safety is a primary concern if young children use the garden, especially with regard to water features. If you are unable to childproof a pond, it can be converted into a bubble fountain or a sand pit and later restored to a water feature, avoid poisonous or prickly plants.

Wildlife in the garden
Birds and butterflies will be encouraged into the garden by growing scented flowers and herbs. Place a bird bath in a shady spot, hang a bird feeder in a tree, with a bench placed within viewing distance they can sit back and enjoy the magic of nature.

Play area
If you have sufficient space in the garden, build a sand pit, erect a climbing frame and if you have a large tree, what about a tree house? Ideal for older children, a place where they can spend time relaxing and enjoying their surroundings.  



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