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Garden Party Ideas for Mother’s Day

Far better than breakfast in bed, throwing your mum a party for Mother’s Day is the perfect way to show her how much you appreciate everything she does for you. With this in mind, discover our top garden party ideas for mother’s day below!

 

mothers-day-garden-party-ideas

Go for a Gazebo

It might be spring time officially, but holding a garden party in March probably has a high chance of rain. A gazebo can help you get the best of both worlds, and with some pretty decor it can create something really special.

Why not try some of our favourites?

  • Multi coloured bunting
  • Swathes of fabric flowers
  • Balloon garlands
  • Fancy table decorations

gazebo-mothers-day-party-garden-gate

Serve Afternoon Tea

Make your mum feel like a queen for the afternoon by serving her a beautiful afternoon tea. Tell her to put on her posh frock, set her up with a pretty table in the garden and then wait on her hand-and-foot with some delicious treats.

We love:

  • Dainty sandwiches (with the crusts cut off of course!)
  • Mini cakes
  • Pretty macarons
  • Scones and cream

mothers-day-garden-party-ideas

 

Plan A Treasure Hunt

A great idea for keeping little kids (and mum) entertained, planning a treasure hunt around the garden is a great adventure. Hide little treats along the way for younger ones to find, just make sure that there’s something extra nice for mum at the end of it. This is a great idea as it gets the whole family involved – which mum is sure to adore!

 

treasure-hunt-garden-mothers-day

 

Take a Trip Down Memory Lane

A lovely way for getting conversations started, decorate your garden with pictures of favourite times you’ve spent with your mum over the years. This is guaranteed to get the stories flowing, and probably some tears too. She’ll appreciate your thoughtfulness more than any gift!

family-pictures-garden-party-mothers-day

 

With plenty ideas for spoiling mum, why not think outside the chocolate box this year and make Mother’s Day 2019 the best one yet!?

Spring Garden Activities

We’re finally onto the tail-end of winter, and spring is starting to show itself. At long last, the days are getting longer and (a little bit) warmer, and we’re able to spend more time outside. Spring is a wonderful time to spend outside, especially with your children. It’s a fantastic opportunity to teach them more about nature and the seasons, and being outside is good for both of you!

In this blog, we’ll explore some fun spring garden activities for you and your children, so you can make the most of the springtime together.

Get Them Planting Their Own Food

Spring Garden Activities planting your own food

Planting with your kids can be really easy, fun and rewarding for both of you. If you’re short on space, remember vegetables can be grown in pots, just like flowers can. Growing food with  your kids also means in a little while, you’ll have some kitchen activities to do with them on a rainy day, cooking the food you’ve grown together. For fussier kids, they’re also more likely to give veggies a chance if they’ve grown them themselves.

Make sure to pick plants that are easy and quick to grow so your children don’t lose patience. Spring onions, spinach and lettuce are all fast growing crops that are usually ready to eat in about a month.

You probably won’t be growing prize winning vegetables to start with, but even a small amount is something really fun for your kids to get involved in, and a great way of getting them outside into nature.

Make a Pizza Garden

Spring Garden Activities Pizza garden

If you need more inspiration for what to grow with your kids, try putting together a pizza garden! It’s encouraging for kids to know that there’s a reward (delicious homemade pizza!) at the end of the process, and can help motivate them.

If you have the space, creating a “pizza-shaped” bed for your plants is a really fun way to lay them out, and will look great from both inside and outside the house.

Plants like tomatoes, onions and peppers, as well as herbs like basil, parsley and rosemary are all easy for kids to grow, and ends in a delicious, nutritious and fresh dinner for the whole family!


Do a Scavenger Hunt

Spring Garden Activities scavenger hunt

If you’re short on space, or gardening just isn’t your thing, try setting up an outdoor scavenger hunt!

Making a list of things for kids to find in the garden is a great way to get them outside and involved in nature. Having them find different types of leaves and telling you which tree it’s from, finding different types of insects and identifying different flowers are all great for getting them invested in the great outdoors.

You could also make it a more sensory experience by categorising the things your kids need to find by touch, sound, look and smell. Finding trees with bark that feels different, the sound of running water, and different coloured items in the garden will help your kids get in touch with their senses and the great outdoors.

Encourage Animals to Visit

Spring Garden Activities animals

Encouraging kids to take an interest not just in the flora of a garden but the fauna as well is a wonderful way for kids to learn more about animals and nature. While this isn’t an option for everyone, if you live somewhere there are birds, insects and other animals, it makes perfect sense to teach kids about how to help and treat wild animals.

Making a birdbath or feeder with your kids is a fun craft activity, and you can get lots of resources to encourage animals into your garden, like these Bee Saver Kits from Friends of the Earth.

Spring is one of the best times of the year to get you and your children outside and seeing the world. Nature changes so quickly at this time of year, so it can be a fun, healthy and a great learning experience –  a wonderful way to spend time with your kids outside.

If you want to spend time outside with your kids in a safe, secure and beautiful garden, contact us at Village Products to get the perfect gates for your home and garden, so you can let your kids roam the garden and get invested in nature with peace of mind.

Resolution: Decoration

 

While the thought of spending time outside is rather unappealing at the moment, if your garden is starting to look a little worse for wear, it may be time to start sprucing it up! From updating your decking to beautifying your gate, we provide you with some great suggestions for how you can refresh your garden ahead of the warmer months.

 

Update your Deck

A lot of gardens have a wooden decking area that after a few years starts to look a bit dated. Softwood decks are prone to algae, mildew and mould as they age, which can become slippery and dangerous. They also lose some of their natural colour, making your garden look a little drab. Updating to a hardwood or even wood effect porcelain tiled decking area can instantly perk up and modernise your garden.

 

resolution decoration decking

Source: HouseBeautiful

 

Add Some Bright Furniture

Brightening up your garden is easy with some bold garden furniture, but this doesn’t necessarily mean you have to splash the cash on brand-new tables and chairs. Instead, paint your own! Old wooden, wicker or metal furniture lends itself perfectly to a colourful update. A subtle colourful wood stain or vibrant coat of paint can both work to update a dull looking outdoor area.

 

Paint Your Shed

In the same vein, painting a garden shed is a great, modern way to ready your garden for sunnier days.  An old, shabby shed can be a bit of an eyesore, but a vamped up shed or summerhouse can make a wonderful focal point for your garden. It’s also a great place to store your new and improved garden furniture while you wait for the days to warm up a bit!

 

resolution decoration paint your shed

Source: Cassiefairy

 

Unusual Planters

Unusual and unique plant pots act as a great talking point. They’re also easy to make, eco-friendly, cheap and as versatile as you need them to be. If you decide to make them out of tin cans, ensure you sand down any sharp edges and put a layer of stones at the bottom, or make holes in the bottom for water to drain out to keep your plants healthy.

 

resolution decoration unusual planters

Source: Ideal Home

 

Fences and Gates

Like decks, if treated poorly, fences and gates can lose their lustre and really bring down the appearance of gardens. You might also find that if you live in a residential or urban area that your garden isn’t very private, in which case fencing and gating can help to make you feel more comfortable in your outdoor space.

 

If for whatever reason, you think a new gate might be right for you, contact us at Village Products, where we can help find the perfect bespoke garden or driveway gate for you.

 

Contact us today on 01925 967 071, and help get the outdoor spaces in your home ready for spring!

Winter Garden Activities For Children

Winter is well and truly upon us, and that means hot chocolates and marshmallows while watching our favourite movies on the TV, wrapping up warm before bracing the freezing air and going ice skating. These are all lovely activities, but there are also some fun things you can do in your garden. From planting particular vegetables to baking birdseed ornaments, we look at 4 great winter activities that all children will love to do.

Gardening

Winter is a good time to plant vegetables such as lettuce, carrots, broccoli and beetroot because they cope well with cold weather (though if you want to be cautious you can cover them with a fleece for extra protection). We recommend planting these vegetables every 2 weeks, so you’ll have a blossoming crop all throughout winter. Let your children pick the vegetables to create a colourful array and then make creative markers that help them remember where they’ve planted them.

 

Top Vegetables To Plant During Winter:

  • Cabbage.
  • Cauliflower.
  • Radish.
  • Turnips.
  • Spring Onion.
  • Peas.

gardening-winter-activities-for-children

Paint Your Pots

If your children want to plant a vegetable that isn’t mentioned above, then no stress or tantrums are needed. Simply put the seeds in a plant pot and they’ll start to grow as the weather heats up. Painting these pots is also a fun activity, though we suggest doing this before planting the seeds!

paint-garden-pots-winter-activities

Create A Bird Feeder

Bird feeders come in all shapes and sizes, though we reckon that Christmas birdseed ornaments are among the best. Your kids will love making them and the birds will enjoy eating them, so we outline how to make them below:

 

  1. In a mixing bowl, mix together 250g of flour, 100ml of water, 2 tbsp of corn syrup and 3 tsps of gelatin until it forms a smooth paste.
  2. Gradually add 500g of birdseed to the mixture and combine until the birdseed is coated.
  3. Melt a pound of lard and mix this in too.
  4. Place greaseproof paper on a baking tray and put your Christmas-themed cookie cutters on top. Spoon the mixture into the cookie cutters, filling out their shapes.
  5. Cut drinking straws into 3 pieces and press a piece into the top portion of the ornaments, making sure it goes all the way through. Leave it there and allow the ornaments to dry for 4 hours.
  6. When the ornaments have dried, carefully remove the straws from the ornaments, and the ornaments from the cookie cutters. Place the ornaments in a freezer to harden overnight.
  7. Place a piece of twine or string through the top of the ornament and hang outside for the birds to eat.

 

birdseed-ornament-winter-activities-for-children
Source: Mavis Butterfield

 

Your children could also keep a bird diary and take pictures of all the lovely animals that eat from the ornaments.

 

Brighten Up The Garden

Bunting and artwork doesn’t just make a summer garden pretty, it can also brighten up an otherwise gloomy winter’s garden. Your children can create cute signs such as ‘Santa – This Way To Our House’ and ‘All Animals Welcome Here’, drawing on pictures and painting them in lots of colour.

draw-pictures-winter-garden-activities

 

With the above activities, you and your children are guaranteed a fun time. Why not ensure your garden is protected with a new side or garden gate from us, all of which are durable, stylish, weather-resistant and require low maintenance.

Best Treatment For Wooden Gates

Whether it’s your garden gate, driveway gate or side gate, keeping it in a pristine condition is not always easy. Wooden gates are especially vulnerable to the elements, with radical changes in temperature speeding up the wearing away process. We may produce some of the best gates around, but even we believe you should take preventative measures to boost your gate’s durability, ensure maximum protection and preserve your gate’s appearance. Choosing the right treatment is a good place to start, and we look at the best in this post.

 

The Best Treatment: Teknos

With benefits including resistance to bacteria, mould and UV rays, it’s no wonder we’re impressed with Teknos’ ‘Forest Inspirations’ wooden gate treatment collection. Available in colours as complimentary as Mahogany and Teak, as well as Light, Medium and Dark Oak, these base coats help to minimise discolouration and maximise durability, emphasizing and protecting the gate’s natural state in the process. Unlike traditional solvent based stains and even some paints, these base coats don’t crack or peel, maintaining their aesthetic appeal for as long as possible. We also like how they show the natural grain of the timber through the colours.

choose wooden treatment

 

When covered with their advanced Aquatop 2600-21 formulation, then the results are even better. Aquatop is a water-based, exterior topcoat suitable for both softwoods and hardwoods, as well as engineered and modified timbers. It’s a flexible and microporous liquid, meaning that it protects your gate against rain, snow and other water-based weather. When applied, it dries quickly, ensuring it doesn’t colourise the underlying coat.

 

Iroko hardwood Lymm design side gate in teak finish
Teak Finish On An Iroko Hardwood Gate (Lymm Design)

 

What Are Other Benefits Of Teknos?

  • Can be applied using conventional spraying systems, such as Airless, Disc and High Rotation Bells.
  • Works especially well with Scandinavian redwood, Idigbo hardwood and Iroko hardwood, helping to smooth out any unevenness in the wood’s surface.
  • Prevents knots bleeding through the coatings, maintaining the wood’s aesthetic appeal.
  • Safe to use and compliant with environmental regulations.
Idigbo-hardwood-Lancashire-design-driveway-gates-in-light-oak-finish
Light Oak Finish On An Idigbo Hardwood Gate (Lancashire design)

 

If you’d like to learn more about Teknos and why we believe they offer the best treatment for wooden gates, feel free to contact us using our contact form, here. Alternatively, call us on 01925 967 071 and we’d only be too happy to help.

Make It Great Beyond The Garden Gate

Having a garden means you have a place all to yourself to relax in the warm summer heat, to host a party when it’s time to celebrate an achievement or event and to grow flowers, fruit and vegetables that bring your garden to life in brilliant colour. Your garden gate offers so much promise, but what does it currently offer? If you’ve been thinking of updating its current visage, then check out our suggestions for easy improvements that make all the difference.

 

garden-gate-post-gardening

 

Soil Success

Have you tried growing a particular shrub, plant, flower, fruit or vegetable to no avail? It’s down to your soil, and its type determines what can grow there.

 

If your soil is clay-like, you can grow things such as:

  • Shrubs: Hydrangea, roses and buddleja.
  • Flowers: Iris, aster and achillea.
  • Plants: Ivy, clematis and honeysuckle.

 

roses-garden-gate-gardening

 

However, dusty soils are better for:

  • Shrubs: Cotoneaster, cytisus and forsythia.
  • Flowers: Tulips, lavender, and rosemary.
  • Vegetables: Carrots, potatoes and onions.

 

potatoes-garden-gate-gardening

 

Ensure you don’t plant seeds in the shade, as the sun boosts plant growth. Adding compost, leaf mould or gravel can enrich the soil and allow the roots to find air in times of bad weather.

 

 

Be Nice To Newbies

If you’ve opted for plant pot flowers, ensure you remove them carefully from their current home, before placing them in your garden. Gently squeeze the sides of the pot and turn it upside down, catching the plant as it falls out. If you try to pull them out by their stems, you may break, damage or bruise them.

 

Always check the labels your plant or seeds come with to, as it will provide information such as:

  • Plant spacing and direction for best growth.
  • How often you should water them.
  • Whether they need fertiliser.

 

 

Remove Weeds

As weeds compete for nutrients, water and sunlight, they can be harmful to growing plants, as well as those that have reached maturity. Check for and remove weeds regularly, ensuring you remove their roots too. Weeds may also hide slugs, snails and other critters who may munch on your plants, and it’s advised that if there are seeds attached to the weeds, not to add them to your compost heap, as this could reseed the weeds. Manually removing them is recommended, but should you opt for a spray, spraying on a dry day will yield better results.

 

 

Plan Your Design

Visualise how you want your garden to look and plan where best to plant your seeds or flowers, taking note of soil type and shade. Rearrangement is fine, especially if a plant isn’t growing as well, or you think it contrasts the colour scheme you’re going for. When planted, remember to label them too for ease of care and maintenance.

 

butterfly-garden-gate

 

A beautiful place to grow flowers is around your garden gate. We sell a range of hardwood and wooden garden gates made of stunning and sturdy Idigbo, Iroko and Scandinavian Redwood, sure to boost your garden’s aesthetic. We encourage you to check out all of our designs and for more information, please call us today on 01925 967 071.

 

 

Iron Rusting? Stainless Steel Is The Answer.

Living near the coast can be a wonderful experience – that fresh sea air, the daily opportunities to swim, surf, sail or simply sunbathe, and seafood straight from the source. After a gloriously sunny day at the beach, returning home to see a rusting iron gate, door or lock however, can be disheartening. You didn’t experience these issues when you lived inland, so what’s going on? We take a look at why iron rusts in coastal cities, why using stainless steel is a better bet and what you can do to maintain your outside furniture.

Why Does Iron Rust In Coastal Cities?

Due to the sea, the surrounding air contains more moisture, sodium chloride and salt content. The latter dissolves into the moisture, which itself has increased levels of water vapour and oxygen. When this comes into contact with iron, iron oxide forms, speeding up the rusting process. How quickly your iron furniture rusts also depends on factors such as temperature, wind direction, humidity, rainfall and your house’s distance from the sea.

Seaside town

So, Why Doesn’t Stainless Steel Rust?

Stainless Steel is made up of protective elements, including chromium, silicon and manganese. When they react with oxygen or moisture, the chromium corrodes, but unlike iron doesn’t break down. The elements then create a thin barrier that prevents further rust by reducing the amount of oxygen and water that can reach the surface.

Due to its resilience, stainless steel locks, doors and gates will fare better in coastal locations than its iron counterparts.

What You Can Do If Your Home Is Suffering From Rust?

Though it is possible to remove rust, using both home-made and chemical solutions, it is a continuous and sometimes strenuous process that requires persistence. If the rust has gone straight through the metal, the object will need replacing.

We suggest the following materials:

  1. Doors, Locks and Gates: Stainless steel or pewter.
  2. Windows: Fibreglass framed doors and windows, with stainless steel fasteners for added protection.
  3. Sliding Glass Doors: Stainless steel rollers.

Metal rusting

Preventing Iron From Rusting In The First Place.

Though it’s impossible to stop iron from rusting, you can slow the process down. Rubbing alcohol on the bare spots and painting over them will help, as will scrubbing away dirt with liquid soap.

We offer a range of stainless steel and pewter ironmongery that can make your coastal home survive the wrath of rust. Check out our product range here.