6 Garden Dangers To Protect Your Children From

6 Garden Dangers To Protect Your Children From

Your children’s safety is absolutely your number one priority. You don’t need a blog post introduction to tell you that. But it’s true that sometimes, despite our intentions as parents, threats don’t ask for permission or come knocking in advance, they can cause harm without expecting it. 

It’s absolutely necessary to let our children play and have fun, not only to build wonderful childhood memories but for their development. Many of us have memories of running around in nature and having a blast.

However, if we’re not careful, our gardens can harbor all sorts of hazards for these curious little explorers. With some smart precautions, though, you can create an outdoor space where your children can play and discover without worry. In this post, we hope to provide a simple list to help you check off such dangers from your list.

Mind Those Ant Trails

Ant infestations are can be a real nuisance, and some species can even sting or bite. Fire ants specifically are known for their feisty behavior and horrible little stingers that can trigger severe reactions in some kids. Keeping a watchful eye out for ant mounds or trails is wise, so you can deal with them promptly using ant bait or sprays designed specifically for ant control. It will also prevent other predators who look for ants from occupying your garden. If you find the nest, then boiling water can be a good solution.

Prune Trees Regularly

Overhanging branches can potentially offer serious danger, especially when storms come or when windy weather is present. Tree pruning doesn’t have to be a regular habit because branches don’t grow that quickly, but it’s important to attend to any overhangs or branches that aren’t 100% trustworthy – that way, you’re less likely to have one come crashing down and injuring someone below. 

For large trees or any near power lines, it’s best to call in a professional arborist or tree surgeon. And obviously, never let the kiddos climb or play underneath when pruning is happening, and try to deter climbing if you can by cutting off those “platform branches” kids might use to climb higher.

Normal Gardens Can Have Poisonous Plants, Too

Many of those common garden plants are actually toxic if ingested. This can include oleander, rhododendron, and daffodils. Toddlers especially might innocently putt leaves or petals in their mouths to explore. 

Do some research to identify any poisonous plants in your garden, then either clearly mark them off-limits or remove them entirely from kid-accessible areas, pulling from the root and replacing them with a benign option. Having a separate, enclosed garden just for non-toxic plants could be a smart solution too. Or maybe your children don’t play in the front garden, and that’s where you can have more freedom in where you plant.

Secure Those Garden Tools

We tend to think of them as pretty harmless implements as adults, but shears, trowels, and rakes can easily cause cuts, scratches, or other injuries in little hands. To a child, a wheelbarrow might be something fun to climb in or push their younger sibling around on, but this can be dangerous too. 

Always store tools securely away in a locked shed or cabinet after using them. Even better, get some kid-sized gardening tools designed specifically with safety in mind if you hope to garden with them, and then show them the value of keeping them safe when not in use. This also prevents thieves from stealing your tools, which, unfortunately, can happen.

Drain Standing Water & Consider Runoff

Again, as adults we tend to ignore small standing pools of water. That might include shallow puddles, birdbaths, small pools or water runoff that hasn’t been addressed. Remember that any standing water creates a real drowning hazard for curious children. 

Make sure to drain them frequently, and consider filling any permanent ponds or streams with gravel or plants until your kids are older. If you have a pool or koi pond, restrict it with locked gates, fences, or hard shell covers – but still be aware kids can get over these and you may need to be a little more focused.

With this advice, you’re much more likely to protect your children from the garden dangers that may otherwise harm them. Of course, you’re not a bad parent for letting your children have fun in the garden, that would be quite silly to assert, but being observant and taking nothing for granted is key to ensure nothing takes you by surprise.

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