3 Ways to Improve Your Garden for Spring & Summer

It’s that time of year! Spring is almost upon us, which means that longer days, warmer temperatures and outdoor gatherings galore are just around the corner.

Many homeowners leave their gardens to grow wild and unruly through the winter months, because—let’s face it—no one wants to go outside and tend the garden when it’s freezing cold!

If your garden looks like it could do with a little improvement before the warmer months roll in, here are three suggestions that you may appreciate.

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Garden · Nature · Outdoors

The Different Types of Spring Bulbs

Crocuses - Spring Bulbs

Spring is a time of renewal and growth. It’s a time to plant seeds, bulbs, and flowers. And one of the best ways to celebrate this season is by planting some spring bulbs. In this blog post, we’re going to explore the different types of spring bulbs and what they’re best used for. From Dahlia tubers to tulip bulbs to crocuses to alliums, we’ll cover everything you need to know about the different types of spring bulbs.

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DIY · Garden · Home

Gardening and DIY with Kids This Spring

When it gets to this time of year, where the weather is a bit more clement, my mind is always full of all of the DIY and garden stuff that I’d like to do and now that the kids are older and a little more able to get involved (don’t worry, I won’t let Burrito Baby hold any power tools!) I’ve been thinking about things we can do together. Luckily, my friends from the blogging world are the BEST source of inspiration, so I thought I’d share some brilliant posts with you of my favourite projects that they’ve done.

How to Make a Tardis Wardrobe

I’ve you’ve got a gaggle of mini Whovians living in your house then this guide to making a tardis wardrobe is perfect for you. Husband and I really encourage the girls to have their interests and try to indulge them as far as possible so I absolutely love the fact that Penny at Parentshaped has nurtured her daughter’s love for all things Doctor Who with her bedroom furniture.

CD Fish Bird Scarers

CD fish bird scarers

I absolutely LOVE this idea for DIY bird-scarers that Liz over at Me and My Shadow made with her daughter to protect their home garden patch. As well as upcycling and making use of old CDs, thus keeping them out of landfill, they look really pretty too. Such a great project to do with kid as you can be as creative as you like with how you decorate them. This post is being brought to you in association with Rancho Cucamonga garden and tree care providers – they’re experts in tree care and can make any garden space look amazing!

DIY Matchbox Drawer Chest

Red Ted Art DIY matchbox drawers

Something that we ALWAYS need more of in our house is storage, so I love the idea of making ourselves some storage solutions out of other things. These cute little drawers from Red Ted Art are the perfect place to keep art supplies and school stuff, and I’ll definitely be making some of these with the girls.

Top Tips for Gardening With Children

At the risk of going a bit meta, Carolin at Mummy Alarm has put together another rundown post, sharing a whole load of other posts about gardening with kids. It’s a real wealth of information which will be useful in the months to come and I’m going to go through and read all of it with interest.

Bedroom in a Box

Dulux Bedroom in a BoxMaking design decisions can be really tricky, especially when you’re trying to stick to a theme, which is why Dulux decided to make the “Bedroom in a Box”, which Sian at Helpful Mum reviewed. She chose a jungle theme for her kids and takes us through exactly how she dealt with the makeover, as well as giving her opinion on the results.

Five Easy Foods to Grow with Kids

If you’re planning on growing veg this spring and summer with your kids, Emma at The Syders has got some excellent suggestions of what you can grow. When I was a kid, I loved nothing more than helping my grandad to pick the peas and runner beans he’d grown in the garden and I think it’s really important for kids to see where food comes from…plus, NOTHING tastes better than strawberries grown in your own garden!

Planting and Sowing

Emmy’s Mummy has got another great gardening post about how to get the kids involved with the planting and sowing stage of gardening, perfect for this time of year. They’re growing a whole variety of different fruit and veg which will be a fabulous crop once they’re all grown and ready for harvest.

Easy DIY Crepe Paper Tulips Craft Tutorial

Tulips are one of my favourite flowers (have you ever seen the black ones?!) and this tulip craft is absolutely perfect for this time of year when the flowers are starting to bloom. As Katie says, they’d be the perfect centrepiece for an Easter dinner, but I also think they’d be ideal for Mother’s Day too, especially if your Mum has allergies and can’t have real flowers.


4 Of The Best Spring City Breaks

If you’ve been working hard lately or you can’t wait for summer, a spring city break could be just the tonic. City breaks give you the chance to get away, explore and experience a bit of culture. If you’re thinking of booking a long weekend away, here are four fabulous suggestions.


A jewel in the emerald crown, Dublin is a beautiful, bustling city. You can enjoy incredible shopping, lively nights on the tiles or peaceful waterfront strolls. Sample Ireland’s most iconic export at the Guinness Factory. Snap up some tickets and experience the electric atmosphere at the Aviva Stadium. Visit Dublin Castle for an intriguing, insightful history lesson and look out for free pop-up events in Temple Bar.

Dublin at Night (Ha'penny Bridge)

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Barcelona is an excellent choice for a spring escape. There’s warmth in the air and you’ll avoid the mammoth crowds of the summer. Stroll through Las Ramblas, listen to live music and watch the street performers. Mosey around the winding streets and take a tour of the quirky boutiques. Head to the Nou Camp if you’re a football fan, or shop up a storm in the city centre. The port is lively in the warmer months and there are plenty of waterfront bars and clubs. Take a guided walking tour and marvel at Gaudi’s inimitable architectural style. Round off your trip with a visit to Parc Guell and La Sagrada Familia. Take a hop on, hop off bus tour if you’re pushed for time and you want to get around the must-see sights with minimal hassle.

Park Guell in Barcelona

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A city steeped in history and heritage, Rome has to be seen to be believed. Walk around almost any corner, and you’ll find something different. There are monuments, churches, statues and fountains aplenty. You’ll also be spoiled for choice when it comes to restaurants. Visit the Pantheon, Forum and Spanish Steps. Take in the wonder of the Colosseum and let the Trevi Fountain enchant you. Take a walk or hop on the metro to Vatican City and explore the beauty of St Peter’s Basilica. The city centre is relatively small and you can walk to most of the main attractions. Search for apartments on sites like if you’re looking for an alternative to a hotel.


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Lisbon is a visual gem at any time of the year, but spring is by far the best time to visit. In the summer, temperatures soar and sightseeing may become unbearable. Head to the lively beachfront neighbourhood of Estoril, or hike to the heights of Alfama for panoramic views. Wander through the old town and visit quirky Baixa. Here you’ll find old-fashioned haberdashers and even the odd apothecary. As the sun sets, head to a restaurant by the water to sample some of the finest fresh seafood you’ll ever taste. Visit for recommendations.

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There’s nothing better than a spontaneous break to revive you and recharge those batteries. If you’re planning a spring trip, why not take these ideas on board? Do some research, get some rough plans together and you’ll be ready to jet off in no time.


7 Ways To Spruce Up Your Garden On A Budget

gardenGardening is one those occupations that doesn’t require a fortune. Like many passions you can spend a lot of money on expensive tools, plants and landscaping, but alternatively you can simply spruce up your garden with the minimum of equipment and stay well within your budget. Tree maintenance experts from Memorial know everything there is to know about this topic – they’re experts in the field.

Here’s how:

1. Plant hedges

If your fencing is looking shabby but you still have to protect your garden’s boundaries take a look at some of the hedges on offer from ashridge nurseries.

Jasmine, for example, is wonderful as it will reward you with sweet smelling blossom in the summer and still act as a sturdy partition in the autumn and winter months. You can also plant hedges to separate one part of the garden from another in order to make your garden look more attractive, or around a greenhouse to make it look less utilitarian – a good brand that we recommend is the Elite greenhouse range, reviewed here.

2. Tools – keeping your costs down

Those bright new shiny tools at the garden centre may look magnificent but most of them also carry a hefty price tag. Expert gardener, Alan Titchmarsh suggests that you can save a fortune by scouring car boot sales and other outlets in order to track down some essential garden equipment.

You will need some shears, secateurs, a spade and a fork, but you don’t need to invest in expensive power tools. Just remember to keep your blades free from rust by giving them a good clean after use.

3. Plants for the summer

Instead of buying your summer plants during the months of June, July and August, buy them as seedlings or plugs in the spring. This is far more cost effective, and as long as you nurture your baby plants throughout the spring you should be able to sit back in the summer and enjoy the fruits of your labour. Invest in perennials; they will give your garden colour for years.

4. Seeds are wonderful

Another way of sprucing up your garden is to get rid of any plants that haven’t done well the previous year and replace them with seeds. You can grow the seeds in trays in your greenhouse, and then plant them in your borders or you can plant the seeds directly into the soil.

Always mark the area where you have planted the seeds and keep them happy with a good layer of compost as plant food.

5. Garden furniture on a budget

Eating outside during the summer months is an annual pleasure but old garden furniture can be expensive to replace. In order to get over this problem, instead of investing in brand new furniture look out for second hand tables and chairs on Gumtree.

Always store your furniture inside over the winter months; this will prolong its life. You can always strip your wooden varnish and then colour and re-varnish your furniture in a bid to give it a new lease of life.

6. Check your pots

Some pots are damaged by the frost, so it’s a great idea to ensure that all of your containers have survived the winter. The magazine Yours suggests painting your pots to give them a makeover.

7. Pruning is good

It’s surprising how much smarter your garden will look after a bit of pruning. As long as frost isn’t forecast give your shrubs and hedges a vigorous session with the shears. This will promote growth and make your garden look a lot smarter.