Thursday 29 March 2012

Secret Garden – Part 4

Welcome to part 4 and the end of the Small Garden Spaces For Kids Series. If you are new to this series you can take a look here to see what it is all about.

Today I am featuring my favourite area of our garden – a little secret hideaway spot that we call dragonfly garden. It is a special kids only space that acts like a 'green' cubby house surrounded by trees and shrubs.

We created this secret spot within one of our garden beds. Chris cleared out a small area, flattened the soil and laid down some old pavers. We found two level sandstone blocks that the girls like to sit on. Dragonfly garden has evolved over time, there is now a path weaving through our garden bed leading to it.

Dragonfly garden changes with the seasons – it is green and well hidden in spring and summer and opens up to catch the sun when the leaves are lost in autumn and winter.

The two sandstones seats are to the right
The fairies have come to visit

Dragonfly garden is popular when friends come to visit and is a great place for the girls to take their afternoon tea.

The path winding through the garden bed leading to dragonfly garden

If you want to create a secret garden it doesn't have to be complicated, it could be as simple as:
  1. A special rock tucked under a tree.
  2. A small space created by positioning pot plants in a circle and allowing a child to get amongst them.
  3. Boards nailed to a tree or rope ladder to allow access to lower branches. If you have carpentry skills and a strong tree you could create a platform too. (You are best at deciding where your risk vs safety balance lies).
  4. Cut back a section of a shrub to allow an opening for a little one to climb in.
For a little inspiration I have included two book links:
  • The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett – one of my favourites as a child.
  • Rosy's Visitorsby Judy Hindley and illustrated by Helen Craig – Cakey's current favourite about a wonderful secret spot in an old tree trunk.
If you have a secret garden I would love to include it here. Please let me know via email, in the comments section or on my facebook page.

I hope you have enjoyed the Small Garden Spaces for Kids series. I plan to post updates on our garden as we make improvements and changes to the space.

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  1. Ohhh this is wonderful - I really want to add something like that to our garden a space just for them. I have loved this series and it's inspired me to get thinking and designing our garden to work on over the next autumn winter for spring next year. Thank you so much

    1. No worries. Can't wait to see some pictures of your garden next year.

  2. I love your secret garden - how much do kids love child sized spaces of their own?!

    1. I know, my girls spend lots of time in their secret garden. Their friends love it too.

  3. I loved it Ali. the entire series has motivated me to work on my window sill garden! Thanks for sharing

    1. You have done some great things with your small garden.

  4. What a wonderful idea!! This year I'm planning on having a sunflower garden for my daughter to play in. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!! I hope you will join us again this week!

  5. What a beautiful space for your children to play! :) Can't wait to create something like this for Miss Daisy! :) Thanks for sharing!

  6. Love, love, love this garden! We are working on creating an outdoor play area for our little guy, too. This series is such an inspiration!

  7. very cool...we have a small condo patio and patch of grass...but we could make this work...

  8. We are reading The Secret Garden right now for about the 5th time, and my kids are begging for their own secret garden. I didn't think we had the room for it, but this post has really opened up my mind as to how we can make it happen. Thanks!


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