“Jamie, how would you feel if we took down the swingset and put in a large vegetable garden and orchard? We could all work on it together. Wouldn’t that be fun? You could learn all about gardening. Plus, you don’t really play on it any longer.”
“Dad, you would ruin my childhood.”
I’m still not sure if she was joking, but point taken. This swingset was put up before she could even walk and she is now 10.5.
Those are actually nicely trimmed weeds within the “playground” and not grass. At some point I gave up on mulching it and trying to fight the otherworldly weeds that emerged there each spring.
And now I’m prepared to turn that area into a deer-proof vegetable garden along with a few fruit trees for good measure. I’m still an amateur when it comes to growing anything edible but I’m ripe and ready (see what I did there?) to get all sorts of educated.
But what to do about that swingset?
I’m a nostalgic guy and all but it’s just a swingset, right? We’ll always have those memories of sliding down the slide in the snow, pushing the kids for hours on end when they were wee things and that one time when our family picnic went awry when the bees started to attack us all. Just because the swingset is physically removed doesn’t mean the memories are removed, correct?
Would you mind telling her that?
And them that.
So my plan looks to have hit a roadblock. I can’t live with being a destroyer of memories.
But then one wonderful reader (may have actually been two) made a suggestion that I really should have thought of myself …
Use the swingset as trellis for beans and other edible vines. A swingset trellis solves the dilemma.
I get it.
The swingset still stands in some capacity satisfying the children’s need to not erase their childhood and we get our long desired vegetable garden. F’n brilliant.
I haven’t approached the little decision makers with the swingset trellis idea yet but I think it could work. I can sell this. I’m even thinking we may be able to keep the set functional in ways while all sorts of deliciousness grows around them. This could actually be fun and dare I say, creative.
Here are some ideas I’ve already pulled from other sites:
Check out this swingset as trellis.
And this swingset as arbor.
And the benefit of not creating waste by doing this.
What do you think about a swingset trellis concept? Have any suggestions on how to best sell this to potentially heartbroken children? How about any creative ways to incorporate the swingset and keep it functional, like still being able to swing?
Thank you in advance for your feedback.