With ever shrinking backyards, busier lifestyles and the push with technology taking over our lives , the basic joy of playing outside is being challanged. Children love to explore and what better place to do this than in the safe environment of their own backyard. There are loads of simple ways that you can create interest and excite the imagination of your little ones.
When it comes to play, kids are pretty simple. The need for extravagant climbing equipment or large Cubby’s really isn’t necessary. We find the kids roam freely through the garden more than they play in their Cubby (much to the disappointment of Mum and Dad who spent hours making it!!) The simple things like jumping over boulders, walking through a secret path in the garden and a favorite with my girls is picking flowers and herbs to make a special pretend dinner.
Being Landscapers it is important for us to show our children how nature works. So we often involve the kids in our gardening by giving them a special shovel of their own so that they can plant little seeds or seedlings and watch them grow. This is especially exciting for the kids when we plant our vege patch. It entices children to try new veges, our beans regularly don’t make it to the dinner table! If you are a little tight for space in your backyard why not try a vertical herb garden or potted veges which you can easily place on a deck area. Kids are fascinated by the cycle of a plants life and the look on their face as the first shoot appears is just beautiful.
Another simple thing that you can do is add some fish to your garden. An easy way to do this is by simply placing a large pot or bowl in your yard, adding some plants for shade and protection and whack in some fish. My kids LOVE saying hello to their fish every afternoon when they get home from school. It’s such a great way to encourage them to venture outside and enjoy some quality time in the garden. They make sure that they can find each fish which they have uniquely named Vegemite, Sunshine, Bibble and Patch. They like to let me know exactly what the fish are up to , where they are hiding and what they are eating.
Kids Cubby Houses
As I mentioned earlier we do have a kids play Cubby in our backyard. In this area we have incorporated a slide, trampoline, sandpit, chalk board and balance beam which has created hours of entertainment and is a favourite with the girls friends when we have a Birthday party. It is an area that we wanted to blend in well with the tropical surrounds. We did this by using thatching for the roofing, painting the Cubby a rusty orange, planting out around the Cubby and digging the trampoline into the garden.
Take a look at the following photos of creative ideas for your Child friendly garden.