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7 DIY Garden Ideas for Children

Have young children and live too far away from your local playground? Landscaping Hobart has prepared a list of our top 7 cost-effective DIY Garden Ideas for Children that you can use to transform your garden into your very own playground. Your child will be kept entertained hours upon end, while also strengthening important developmental skills such as creativity, balance, co-ordination and artistic expression. We have taken special care to ensure that all of these garden design ideas are child friendly.

1. Tire swing

Building your own tire swing is a cost-effective alternative to a swing set which will not only provide your children with hours of entertainment, but also help in developing a sense of balance – it is ideal for child development. If you do not have a spare used tire, head down to your local tire shop and ask, they will give you one for free.

A Tire Swing is the perfect kid friendly garden idea

Tire Swing Materials and Tools:

A tire, 3x eye bolts (with washer and nut), 4x S-hooks, 3x equal length chains, 1x long chain, swivel, connector link, clip hook, drill, and pliers.

Tire Swing Total Approximate Cost:

Under $100

Tire Swing Tips:

Drill drainage holes into the bottom of the tire to avoid water pooling.

DIY Tire Swing Guide:

How To Make a Tire Swing by Instructables

2. Sand Box

Almost every child in Australia grew up building sand castles in a sand box. Apart from endless hours of fun, a sand box improves creative thinking, imagination, hand-eye coordination and otherwise strengthens sensory vocabulary through sensory touch-and-feel play. Best of all, you can transform an old book case into a sand box. All you need to do is remove the shelving, lay a base of plastic tarp, and fill with sand. A sand box is also an ideal front yard idea.

Sand Box Materials and Tools:

An old bookcase, plastic tarpaulin, pack of nails, sand and a hammer.

Sand Box Total Approximate Cost:

Under $30

Sand Box Tips:

Avoid injury by using clout nails to fix the position of the tarpaulin as they have a flat head. Be sure to check the sand box for insects, bugs or spiders before your child begins playtime.

DIY Sand Box Guide:

Colour-Block Sandbox by The Homes I have Made

3. Backyard Tight-Rope

Have you ever seen your child hanging from the breakfast bar or trying to balance along the ride of a skirting board? If so, you should consider installing a back-yard tight rope to encourage that athletic flare.  A backyard tight-rope is by far the least expensive kid friendly garden idea which can be used by children of all ages, no matter the season.

A Backyard Tight-Rope is an ideal small garden idea

Backyard Tight-Rope Materials and Tools:

1x ratchet strap, 2 x carpet scraps or towels, and 2x trees or load bearing poles.

Backyard Tight-Rope Total Approximate Cost:

Under $10

Backyard Tight-Rope Tips:

The tight-rope need not be any more than 45 cm above the ground.

DIY Backyard Tight-Rope Guide:

How to Make a Tightrope for Your Kids by Bigger Than The Three Of Us

4. Chalkboard or Blackboard

Traditional teaching curriculums used in schools often place little emphasis on the importance of arts education. Arts education is important for the development of your child because it teaches self-expression, helps in the development of dexterity for writing, grows the right side of the brain and strengths fine motor skills. You can supplement your child’s arts education by installing a chalkboard or blackboard and transforming your backyard into an arts studio. Your child may be end up being the next Vincent Van Gogh, who knows? A chalkboard or blackboard is also a perfect small yard idea.

A Chalkboard is a great corner garden idea

Chalkboard Materials and Tools:

1x plywood (1200 x 1200 m), sandpaper, wood primer, chalkboard paint, and chalk.

Chalkboard Total Approximate Cost:

Under $40

Chalkboard Tips:

Apply two coats of the chalkboard paint, ensuring that the first coat is completely dry before the second is applied.

DIY Chalkboard Guide:

How to Make Your Own Chalkboard by Artful Parent

5. Rainbow Hopscotch

Transform those water-logged or soggy areas of your garden lawn into a bright and colorful hopscotch zone. Forgot the rules of hopscotch? Well, Australia plays hopscotch in a way that is different to other countries. In Australia, hopscotch is played in stages, with the first stage being played as per the standard rules. If the player completes the first stage, they advance to the second stage where they are required to jump into each sqaure with two feet. The final stage is by far the most difficult, players must jump into the squares using two feet, while keeping their legs crossed. You only win if you complete all three stages.

Even adults will love Rainbow Hopscotch

Rainbow Hopscotch Materials and Tools:

11x large sqaure pavers, 8x cans of spray paint, 1x tarpaulin, 1x paint brush, and 1x can of white paint.

Rainbow Hopscotch Total Approximate Cost:

Under $70

Rainbow Hopscotch Tips:

Lay the pavers on the plastic tarp when spray painting to avoid getting paint where it shouldn’t be.

DIY Rainbow Hopscotch Guide:

Easy DIY Rainbow Paver Hopscotch by Happiness is Homemade

6. Herb Garden

What better way to teach your child the basics of gardening than with their very own herb garden? Planting a herb garden is also the perfect opportunity to spend some quality time with your kid. Landscaping Hobart recommends planting a pizza herb garden, consisting of: basil, parsley and oregano. This herb garden idea only uses herbs that are easy to grow, relatively inexpensive and can be used on a pizza. If you or your child has a green thumb, a more adventurous alternative is to grow a strawberry patch instead.

Start with a small Herb Garden

Herb Garden Materials and Tools:

1x Basil plant, 1x Oregano plant, 1x Parsley plant, 1x large storage crate, 1x packet of vegetable potting mix, gloves and a spade.

Herb Garden Total Approximate Cost:

Under $60

Herb Garden Tips:

Avoid overwhelming your child by limiting your herb garden to only 3 plants.

DIY Herb Garden Guide:

Check out Landscaping Hobart’s Master Class: Growing Basil in Tasmania and Master Class: Growing Strawberries in Tasmania for information on how to grow basil and strawberries in Tasmania.

7. Worm Farm Science Experiment

Does your kid have a passion for all things relating to science? Bring the science lab to your very own backyard by creating a worm farm. A worm farm can be used to teach your child important scientific concepts such as the nutrient cycle, invertebrates versus vertebrates, asexual reproduction, and observation. All you need to do is remove the top from a large pastic soda bottle, poke at least 3 holes into it, and fill the bottle with alternating layers of soil and sand. Cover the top layer with 4 teaspoons of water and dead leaves. Then, place the worms gently underneath the leaves, cover the bottle with dark paper and leave it for 2 weeks. Have your child make predictions about what will happen next (i.e. have them develop a hypothesis – the key part of the scientific method). At the end of the 2 weeks, remove the paper and reveal the network of tunnels and how those worms have mixed the layers of sand and soil together.

Worm Farm Materials and Tools:

1x large plastic soda bottle, garden soil, sand, dead leaves, water, earthworms or worms, cling wrap, dark paper and a pencil.

Worm Farm Total Approximate Cost:

Under $30

Worm Farm Tips:

Add 2 teaspoons of water to the bottle each day to keep the soil moist and keep the bottle out of direct sunlight, preferably in a shaded position or even indoors.

DIY Worm Farm Guide:

Science experiment: Worm watch by KidSpot

Do you avoid DIY projects like the plague? Touch base with Landscaping Hobart by emailing or using the Quote page.

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