Edible Play Garden, Liverpool

The design of a multi-functional family space for a young couple with two small children.

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Prior to the re-design, the family enjoyed spending time in the garden but only used about two thirds of the space.  The triangular shaped, far end of the garden had become a bit of a ‘no-go area’ with large overgrown conifer trees, a leaky pond and uneven levels.

The two main items on the family’s wish list were an ‘Edible Growing Area’ and a smooth, level ‘Play Area’.  To incorporate these and provide a versatile, fun space for everyone, the space was divided roughly in half down the centre by a curving, natural stone path.  The path leads from the main part of the garden to a new, modern summerhouse, nestled against the warm, red brick boundary wall.  The summerhouse creates a focal point and a place to appreciate views of the garden from in all weathers.

In the middle of the play area, a 10 foot round trampoline is the main feature, to provide endless hours of fun for the two children, now and in years to come.  The trampoline was installed flush with the ground and surrounded by lots of colourful green rubber safety surfacing, perfect for running around, wheeling toy cars and bicycles on and providing the flexibility to add a freestanding climbing frame or play house.  In the adjacent growing area, the circular design style has been followed through with two low level, half-moon shaped beds for the children to dig and grow their first plants in, and for the parents, a generous sized continuous, wavy edged raised bed.   For the surfacing, bark chipping were used to create a more natural feel and the beds were built from half-rounded timber logs.

At the end of the transformation the family has a new garden space that they can all enjoy together.  The children have a vibrant, safe space to play, whilst the adults can now relax with a glass of wine, keep an eye on the children and occasionally potter in their raised beds, tending to their delicious new fruit, vegetables and herb plants.

Contractor – Abel Landscapes