Tips for Creating a Child-Safe Garden for a Young Family
Time is the one thing we as parents never seem to have enough of. Children grow up too fast and soon we are left with nothing but fond memories of our young families. The more time you spend together as a family, the more chance you have of sharing wonderful experiences.
One sure-fire way to ensure quality time with your family is to spend time in nature. While not everyone is fortunate enough to live in the countryside or able to afford vacations to retreats in the wild, designing a garden for the entire family to relax and bond in, is much more easily attainable.
Kids are naturally drawn to playing outside and for that reason having a child-friendly garden is a huge bonus for a young family. Children flourish outdoors and having your own space in which they can do so is of great importance to most parents. A garden is important for so many reasons. Not only does outdoor play stimulate a child’s senses and aid in keeping them fit and healthy, but it can also teach them valuable skills such as appreciating nature and caring for a garden.
Creating a garden suitable for a young family does not have to be costly or complicated. By following a few simple guidelines you will be bonding outside the confines of your home sooner than you think.
Create A Personal Safety Strategy
As a parent, you will not be able to enjoy your garden if you always have to watch the children when they play outside because you are worried about their safety. All parents have different expectations regarding child safety and when children range in ages, the solutions often need to be individualized. Ensure that, by doing sufficient research and enlisting the help of experts if needed, you end up with a garden that you personally feel is safe for your children to play in.
Create Zones Within Your Garden
Most adults would like an area for themselves separate from the kids’ area. The easiest way to visualize this is to think about the zones as concentric rings around your house. The area closest to your house should be the safest. This is the area where you will be able to keep an eye on young children even if you are not outside with them. As it happens, this is also the best place to have a ‘show garden’.
There is no need for a battle of space. As we instil sharing and respect in our children we need to do the same, leading by example. Nothing prevents you from having both an intricately crafted garden bench and a scattering of brightly-colored plastic toys all in the same space. As the children get older the toys will get less and make space for sports equipment instead.
Here are some family-friendly garden safety tips:
No Water For Small Children
A toddler can drown in only a few inches of water which is why no water, not even a trough or deep bucket, should be left in the garden where a child can access it unsupervised. If you already have a pond or a pool in the garden, make sure you take the necessary precautions to prevent your children from falling into the water.
Keep Them Contained
A barrier will go a long way in keeping different areas of the garden separate, especially if you want to prevent a toddler from digging into your newly-planted veg garden or uprooting your begonias. A variety of barricades will do such as a pretty hedge, low gate, picket fence or even just dense shrubbery.
Check your garden for toxic and irritant plants. Although severe poisoning by plants is uncommon in the USA, some garden plants do present a hazard in terms of skin reactions. It is a good idea to check what you already have in the garden and only adds new plants that are completely safe. If you have any doubts about your own ability to distinguish between various plants, call in the help of a professional.
You don’t need to spend a fortune on a designer garden, especially not as a young family. Children are known to get bored with fancy structures and toys very fast anyway and would much rather play in the mud or simply run around on a soft, green lawn. Be ready to embrace the changes that are bound to occur as your children grow up and your family expands and enjoy every memory made with those you love in your own special garden.