Create a Fairy Garden in a Wheelbarrow

Create a Fairy Garden in a Wheelbarrow

Posted 14th Feb 2018

Inspire little green fingers and imaginations by creating a Wheelbarrow Fairy Garden

Depending on age, your child may be able to do this independently with minimal guidance or alternatively, it can be a wonderful family activity to share.

You will need

1 wheelbarrow
Quality peat free and green waste free compost
Small plants (see suggestions below)
Pebbles, rocks
Figurines, small toys, mini fairy lights etc


1 Make sure the wheelbarrow is free from rust or sharp edges.

2 Drill a few holes into the bottom of the wheelbarrow to prevent a boggy garden.

3 With the wheelbarrow in situ (as it may be too heavy to move later), fill with soil to approximately 3 inches below the top of the wheelbarrow.

4 Gather your garden accessories and plants:

- dolls’ house furniture is a great size

- plastic lids make super ponds

- lollipop sticks can be picket fences

- upturned thimbles become plant pots

- pine cones transform into trees

- twigs and twine make a charming washing line

- figurines, plastic animals etc.

5 It may help to sketch out a plan of your desired layout.

6 Place the plants and main features where you wish them to go.

7 When you are happy with your arrangement, plant the plants as instructed and water.

8 Add your accessories.

Suggested Plants

A garden must have plants! You can even include edibles for a colourful and tasty addition to your fairy garden. Many of these plants can be found at

- Ivy is great for trailing over edges and filling gaps.

- Nasturtiums are simple to grow from seed (and cheap). They are exuberant and floriferous – full of frothy loveliness.

- Lobelia planted in little bunches provides a charming effect.

- Any bedding plants, such as petunias, will be great.

- Sometimes called ‘Babies’ Tears’ or ‘Mind Your Own Business’ and formerly called Helxine, Soleirolia Soleirollia (so good they named it twice), is a little plant with little green leaves that spread like mad over surfaces. Perfect for wheelbarrows.

- Sedums and sempervivium succulents are great if the compost/situation is quite dry and sunny.

- Little radishes are quick and easy.

- Small finger carrots are delightful.

- Dwarf French beans are simple and effective, growing to around 18cm high.

- Cut and come again lettuce is ideal for interplanting.

- There’s lots of herbs that will add scent and flavour too.

Don’t forget to water your plants when needed and to remove faded leaves or flowers to keep the plants healthy.


Your garden doesn’t have to be a home for fairies; it could be a jungle for that collection of plastic animals, a wild landscape for dinosaurs, a castle garden for knights or a farmyard… Whatever your child’s current interests, a landscape can be created.

If you don’t have a wheelbarrow spare, try a large planter, section of your border or even a large tray as an alternative.

Now to decide where you want to place your new magical garden!

Tutorial courtesy of

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