Something strange happens to us parents of preteens. ‘Me time’ is something that’s simply harder and harder to come by. That’s not because the kids necessarily need more attention. If anything, they’re becoming more and more independent at a scarily fast rate. No, it’s the other end of the family spectrum that starts to require more of your time.
Between keeping up with two hyper children and lending an extra hand to ageing parents who need help with daily and weekly errands, I’ve been thinking about how we can all spend more time together in one place at one time so that I’m not running around. A low-maintenance garden seems to be the perfect fit, together with play equipment like climbing frames or swings for the kids.
Wildflower seeds from The Grass People offer the have-a-go gardener something fast and colourful that’s super easy to maintain.
Ideal for gardens with pathways (so that you don’t trample the small flowers as they poke up through the grass), these ingenious seed packets mean that you can sprinkle vibrancy and colour onto any grassy or soiled area and walk away. The seeds do the hard work.
No need for a greenhouse or plant pots or expensive gardening equipment. What’s even better is that the wildflowers attract all manner of new and interesting garden visitors like buzzy bees and butterflies. That sounds like a lawn for all ages to me!
Start a Fairy Garden
This one is particularly great for younger children who enjoy story time – and likewise great for grandparents who love to tell stories. You can go as small or as large as your budget allows. I’d recommend beginning with a widely available fairy door or a fairy house.
Toad homes are a fantastic option here, too, as they will look ‘lived in’ as the local toads (and other small animals) make use of the shelter.
Couple this idea with a tiny gravel or wood chip pathway to a shallow frog pond and your miniature fairy garden will start to take shape.
Add more homes, a small pebble rockery, and even dolls-house style benches to create a full village.
DIY Bird Feeder
Kids are fascinated with animals. That childhood love of the natural world never really goes away. For most of us, the sight of a red-breasted robin in the garden brightens our day – and we’ll even point out the winged visitor to anyone around us.
Invite more of these wonderful conversation starters into your garden with a low maintenance DIY bird feeder.
Hang a small wicker basket filled with seeds or transform a clear plastic bottle into a bird-friendly buffet by cutting multiple small holes in the side of the bottle and filling it with bird feed (don’t forget to slot in a wooden spoon or two to give the birds a perch).