Attending Glee, the leading garden and leisure industry show, was a great opportunity for Nathan Dodd to spot trends and anticipate products that will come onto the market in the near future.
Forest Schools are inspiring places, designed to give children the opportunity to develop confidence and increase self-esteem in natural woodland. Nathan James Dodd suggests ten items that will useful in such an environment.
In a Forest School each child is inspired to engage in tasks and achieve goals in a positive natural environment. GardenSite offers many items of equipment and structures that can contribute to their success.
Benches are clearly useful for the children to sit while engaged in many activities. This can be a simple sleeper bench, something more ornate or, possibly most appropriate to a forest school, a half circle tree seat.
There are tables of many different sizes, square rectangular or circular. Sturdy stand alone styles or picnic tables that can seat ten children or more, either on benches or stools around a generously sized table top.
Covers are available to protect the tables, benches and chairs during bad weather but these are not entirely necessary as pressure treated timber is guaranteed to last for many years.
Sheds must be almost obligatory to secure tools and equipment of all sorts, and there is a tremendous choice constructed from metal, plastic and timber.
To fit in with the surroundings, timber security sheds are available with small high windows or none at all that keep contents out of view. High value items, perhaps mountain bikes, can also be stored safely in specialist high security lockers.
Greenhouses will encourage horticultural interest and there have been several reports from various credible sources showing evidence that gardening has many very positive benefits including increasing self-esteem.
Pergolas and gazebos are useful structures for any activity that needs to take place under cover. The large Kalahari Oval Pavilion Gazebo is a fine example of how substantial these can be, accommodating a large number of people.
Although artificial grass might seem an anachronism in this environment, it is very useful in high traffic areas. This might well be the case when the Buschbeck masonry barbecue is fired up, especially as it can be used as a log burner once the food has been eaten.
With only a few months' training under her belt, GardenSite's own Flori Bosnigeanu took part in this year's Great Birmingham Run, raising over £500 for the city's Children's Hospital.
Create a Halloween party in your house or garden with ideas and suggestions from David Coton that will keep your children and neighbours thrilled and spooked on the 31st October.
Looking for some advice on how to decorate your garden for halloween? David Coton has some great ideas to help you create a horror themed garden to scare your neighbours and any trick & treaters who come to your door.
To grow the biggest, scariest pumpkin in time for Halloween isn't easy as they take some time to mature and prefer a warm climate. To have the best chance of success Martyn Loach recommends sowing seed indoors during April and then planting out in late May or June.