Creating Whimsical Gardens for Children

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In this post, I’m sharing how we built a whimsical garden experience for the children. This post is full of the many ways that we created our whimsical gardens based off of our favorite literature books.

If you’re looking for fun ways to get your kids interested in gardening, look no further!

By designing these whimsical gardens for the kids, we’ve created something that they look forward to spending many hours in.

garden arch with beans and string lights in the garden.

“Let them once get in touch with nature and a habit is formed which will be a source of delight and habit through life.”

 Charlotte Mason

Whimsical garden ideas

Interesting ideas are presented using bright colors, fun shapes, and practical plants that the children will enjoy taking care of.

If you read our summer raised bed garden tour post, I shared how we started to build our children’s garden spaces. And how literature played a huge part in the creation process. In this post, I’m going to share a few more details on our whimsical garden spaces for the children.

We follow the Charlotte Mason method of education in our homeschool. And a huge component of this method, is teaching through living books.

And since according to Mason’s Philosophies, “education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life”, we’ve created an atmosphere full of living ideas and allegory into our every day lives.

Often our children are imaginative & creative in the garden after reading a beautiful book together.

Many times I’ll find them creating epic battles or going on adventures as they’ve read from one of the Narnia books and calling out “for Narnia & for Aslan”!!  

And other times they may be hiding from Mr. McGregor or finding gnomes, fairies & other woodland creatures hidden among the flowers.

In this post, I’m sharing more details about how we incorporated these elements to the garden area for the children to enjoy.

“A love of Nature, implanted so early that it will seem to them hereafter to have been born in them, will enrich their lives with pure interests, absorbing pursuits, health, and good humour.”

— Charlotte Mason
children in the garden at night with string lights.

Adding whimsy through lighting

Another element that we added to the garden to create a bit of whimsy for the children, is through lighting. We build green living walls to create a room within the garden. This idea was created after reading The Secret Garden together.

The only way to access the garden spaces will be to enter through the arch tunnels which we built out of cattle panels and have a variety of plants climbing over each one.

Recently we were sent this beautiful set of patio string lights as a gift from Ollny. And they are truly stunning. I mean, just look at how well they light up the garden space at night!

We surprised the kids with this set up and they ran outside the next morning bright and early (farm kids, after all) like it was Christmas!

I really love how the led bulbs are made of durable plastic and are much safer and more durable than the traditional glass bulb. This is super important if the children are running around the garden space barefoot.

girls sitting on chairs in the garden with string lights overhead at night.
young boy in the garden at night with string lights overhead.
little girl in the garden at night with the string lights.

How we added the string lights to the garden

This process was extremely easy to set up. These string patio lights have a built-in hanging ring above each socket, making it super easy to hang.

We started with hanging them on our raised bed garden arches and ran them to extra poles we had leftover from the house build.

I chose a location near the raised beds with sunflowers to sort of hide the poles slightly. My husband dug a little hole and buried the poles in about a foot deep.

We created a little room and made a mini seating area under the lighting to enjoy while working in the garden or at night.

hanging string lights by the sunflowers in the garden.
closeup of the patio string lights in the garden.

These lights are such good quality and make such a beautiful whimsical garden feature. They make the garden spaces truly enjoyable no matter the time of day.

Another great feature of these patio lights that I wanted to share is that they are meant for many different weather conditions. They can can withstand wind, rain, sun, and extreme temperature outdoors.

We have a lot of extreme weather here in Nebraska and I’m excited to keep these lights for enjoyment through many of the different seasons in the garden.

→ to purchase these patio lights, check out Ollny here.

blue coat hanging by the espalier apple tree in the back part of the garden.

Lastly, I wanted to share a nod to Beatrix Potter with this little piece of whimsy. Inspired by Mr. McGreggor’s garden, we hung Peter Rabbit’s coat near our row of espalier apple trees.

More favorite garden posts

Here are a few of our favorite garden posts that we think you’ll love too!

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