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How to make your backyard landscape a lot more fun!

Updated on January 15, 2014

Just a bland backyard, but you can change that!



Owning a home is the American dream. And having a nice yard is just another benefit to home ownership. We use our yards for family gatherings, bonfires, BBQ's, relaxing, enjoying hobbies, and gardening. When you have young children, it's not impossible to dedicate magical outdoor spaces for them to enjoy as well. You can go beyond a blow up pool and a swing-set, and give them other options to enjoy this space not only as a family, but for their individual enjoyment as well.

Skip the sandbox, make a dirtbox!

Choose one location in your yard that can be dedicated to kids. An area for your kids to dig and build in the lovely dirt! Instead of having a sandbox, try a dirtbox or even just a huge pile of dirt and watch how your kids spend hours of curiosity and delight digging and using various toys, dump trucks, shovels or even little green army men to build and demolish the soft natural dirt. You can even bury pieces of PVC tubing to create tunnels, under ground roadways and subways!

All you need is a load of topsoil delivered and dumped into that designated spot in your yard, after your kids have played in it for a few weeks, spread it back into your lawn! Two uses and endless fun with a benefit to your landscape.

An outdoor kitchen or potting shed

Old cabinets or shelves make great outdoor play kitchens or potting sheds

Turn an old cabinet, bookcase, or shelf into an outdoor play kitchen or potting shed. Little girls love to mimic their mothers. What could be better for mixing up mud pies? Or tending to their own play garden? Check out your local thrift store for pots, pans, bowls, spoons, measuring cups and more. You can easily create this idea for just a few bucks!

An outdoor doll house fit for fairy queens

Make a fairy retreat

Start with plants and moss that thrive in your location/area. If you need help, check with your local nursery. A 24" saucer, plate or other dish will work quite nicely. Next, add pebbles, stone walkways, dollhouse size furniture, mini gardening tools, and animal figurines! The fairies will come at night and love to be there!

Instant play place!

A fun hideaway!
A fun hideaway!

A hanging hideaway

Gather scrap fabrics from your local craft store or thrift store. A few hanging materials can create the perfect private spot for play tea parties, secret meetings, even games of hide-and-seek.

You will need

  • 2-10ft 3/4 inch sections of pex pipe (get it at the local hardware store)
  • 16 screw eyes, no 14 size
  • Fishing line (25 lb test or stronger)
  • 2 1/2 insert couplings (found with the pex pipe)
  • 3/4 inch split key-ring
  • masking tape
  • 5-108 by 54 inch plastic tablecloths or other scrap material in those dimensions
  1. Measure and mark both pex pieces at 2ft spaces and twist a screw eye at each marking
  2. Measure and tie 6 ft length of fishing line to each screw eye
  3. Wrap tape around the ends of the couplings, then insert them into the ends of the pex pieces to create a large circle
  4. Gather the lengths of the fishing line in the center of the circle and slip them through the key ring. Hold the gathered lines in one hand and with the other hand move the ring up and down the cone of the lines to find the center of the hoop and to see that the lines are even. Tie the lines together in a knot and remove the ring and tie it to the end of the gathered lines.
  5. Hang the hoop about 4,5, or 6ft off the ground, depending on the height of your children.
  6. Take the scrap fabric, then fold it in half to measure 54 inches strips. Measure and cut two 24 inch wide sections.
  7. Cut 3 inch wide strips into each section, stopping the cut about an inch from the top
  8. Repeat the last two steps with the other fabric pieces or tablecloths so that you have a total of ten 24-inch wide sections.
  9. Unfold and drape a section between two screw eyes on the hoop!


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    • Bishop55 profile image

      Rebecca 4 years ago from USA

      lol! No kidding right! My kid just wants to plug into something. We have to remind him to actually play! It's nuts. I should retract my comment on the photo of that yard being bland. Compared to my yard, it's not bland at all.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      I would have loved a backyard like this when I was a kid. The dirtbox idea is a really great idea. Today, most kids don't even get out in the fresh air to enjoy their backyard. Perhaps turning it into an Angry Birds setting would get them out there.

    • Efficient Admin profile image

      Efficient Admin 4 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      I don't think the backyard in the first photo is bland - it's a beautiful backyard! Even better it is fenced in. My dream house will have a backyard like this! Thanks for sharing lots of wonderful information.