Hiding Up In the Tree House

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A tree house made from scraps can be an exiting place for children of all ages

tree houseI have fond memories of climbing trees when I was younger, but I did not have a tree house. When my son was younger, we started a tree house in a maple behind my shed. It was made from various scrap pieces. The floor was a pallet; one wall was a door. My son mainly used this as a staging area to go and sit on the roof of the shed with his friends. Not a bad place to hang out. I remember spending a good deal of time on the roof of my parent’s garage.

    When we replaced the fence at the back of the property, we took some of the boards to create screens for my work area behind the shed. This led to my son wanting to expand the tree house, even though he was not really using it. With other pieces found around the home, we built a second level to the structure. Knowing that my little girls will want to be up there, my son and I planned out walls that were stable and that had gaps of around four and half inches to prevent a child going through these spaces.  I inherited several step ladders, so one was used as the entrance to the tree house’s lower level. The only item that I specifically bought for the tree house were paving stones for the ladder to have a base.
    When I made the new fence covering in the front yard, I had various sized scrap pieces, which I saved in case they could be of use on another project. With the girls going up to the tree house every day (and me having to follow them), I found that the afternoon soon was too hot, so I used the fence pieces to create roof shingles over part of the lower level. Unfortunately, the tree was hacked to death by the utility company, so I am stripping the bark to prevent insect damage. Most of the tree house never relied on the tree for support. Currently, my son and I wish to create a deck over part of the shed roof. The shed has a gambrel roof. So far every member of the family has spent time up in the tree house, and we are all feeling childlike glee, so I think the larger platform may be a good idea. I want to see if I have any scraps to make a doll house to be affixed to the tree house, another play station.
    I think that Katya will want to incorporate planters into the structure. We have a small window box hanging on her “castle” ( a swing set/fort). She decided that she need “baby plants” (seeds) instead of going and buying a plant. Since we were buying seeds, we went to Southwest Fertilizer, which lead the girls to buy a good many seeds. We planted them in spots around the house. We are awaiting bunching onions, broccoli, cucumbers, mung beans, cilantro, and winter squash. Most of those will do well, although you might not think that this is the time for planting seeds. The haricort vert beans, fengreek, and cumin were already planted, and they have been growing fine. The cumin is going slower than the others. By the way, Katya’s flowers for her castle are growing well too. I think she planted a pink zinnia.
tree house roof
    My backyard has been described as a boot camp for children. There are certainly a good many obstacles. I do have other outdoor rooms, so the space is not entirely dedicated to the kids. There is the cooking area, the porch for dining, a spot for reading, and a vegetable garden. Maybe the deck above the shed will be a part of the tree house enjoyed by all.

One Response to “Hiding Up In the Tree House”

  • Hey there, thanks for the information. I too own a blog similar to this, and I have also reviewed products, and provided information similar to this. I will be checking back sometime in the near future for more useful information. THanks. :)

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This site came out of my desire to write about my love of gardening, but also to connect it to my knowledge derived from home inspections. That is why I tied it to the home inspection site.If you have questions, you can email them to me (frank at yourhoustonhomeinspector.com). For home inspections, call 713.781.6090.
Happy gardening, Frank


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