Recently I was set a fun gardening challenge task by MKM, the independant builders merchants. Now that the weather is improving, MKM are keen for people to enjoy spending more time in their garden. With a £50 spend, they wanted to see if I could improve a small section of our garden, as part of their Garden SOS Challenge.
There are lots of small sections of our garden needing attention! But we settled on a neglected patch next to our sons’ playhouse. I thought it would be nice to create a mini-garden for their playhouse, to extend their outdoor fun. I envisaged a little area where they could duck behind bushes and play spies or adventurers or whatever else they fancied!
As you can see, it was a pretty sad little corner:
For £50 I reckoned we could score a some nice, reasonably well established plants or shrubs to give a bit of structure to the space, but we would also need to be inventive, using whatever else we found around the garden or in our shed.
There is a garden nursery near where we live so I headed there with my eldest son and we picked a beautiful Acer tree, a bamboo plant – small now, but it will grow tall and will also provide a whispering sound when the wind blows, oh and a spiky plant I forget the name of (oops – sorry! maybe someone more green-fingered can remind me? :))
We also managed to pick up a deal of 3 bags of decorative stones for £10. We came in on budget at £48.50.
My husband started by clearing the patch of ground and removed the bush that had been against the fence (it was not all that healthy and took up a bit too much room). He also cut out a curved border in the lawn, removing some patchy turf.
Then we were able to dig in and water the three new plants.
We had a stack of garden patio slabs not doing anything, so used 3 of them to make a little stepping area within the plants. Next we decided to use some of the chopped logs we had set aside to burn in our firepit, to create an edge to the new mini-garden, giving it a slightly ‘woodland’ feel. Finally we poured on the bags of stones and distributed them around the space, adding a couple more bigger logs as upright features.
How do you think we did? We are really happy with the result, it didn’t take a huge amount of effort or expense, all the family got involved too and it looks so much better than before! We wouldn’t have thought of doing this without being set the challenge, so thank you MKM! And most importantly, the lads love it and are having fun dodging in and out of the area as they play.