Creating a kid-friendly garden
Portland, Oregon springtime, with its explosion of color after months of gray drizzle, gets me in a digging mood. I'm a gardening lover and a plant geek, and I have found it difficult to balance my craving for a backyard paradise with my kids' desire for a play structure. I've struck a decent compromise (I think) by leaving a decent amount of grass and integrating the following features into my garden; good for beauty and play:
- Stepping stone paths in my beds, which my son and his friends creep through (be sure to border them with soft plants)
- A few sturdy boulders in strategic spots for climbing and jumping
- A shallow, trickling fountain (kid magnet, not deep enough to pose a drowning threat)
- A gravel pathway for digging
- Bird feeders, squirrel feeders, lots of hummingbird- and butterfly-friendly flowers
- A small area they get to plant themselves
- Space for at least two or three monstrous sunflowers
- Snackables: strawberries, cherry tomatoes, snap peas...
How do your make your backyard a "playable" for kids and adults? Any suggestions for playscape that's fun but doesn't dominate the yard?