Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Interplay My Fairy Garden - Fairy Garden and Lilypad Gardens

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids

When I saw the review opportunity for something from Interplay's Fairy Garden range, I jumped right to it. Not because we are really into fairy play, but look at the kits! It's enough to get this grown up excited!

We were sent Interplay My Fairy Garden - Fairy Garden kit to review, but  I , WE, loved it so much  I , I mean WE! Had to have both (I have 2 kids...). I bought another Fairy Garden as a birthday present for Clay's friend too, and to safe postage on Amazon UK, I bought the Lilypad Gardens as well. In my defense, the kids claimed a garden each, so I did the right thing!

I thought I'll give our review for both of the kits, because they are equally fantastic products, but one just suited us more than the other.

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids

The original, also the best seller - Fairy Garden (RRP £14.99, recommended for age 4 years +), comes with a lot of things!

Fairy Garden Bowl
Fairy Belle, mouse and mushroom figurines
Oyster shell water pond
Fairy cottage parts
Clothes line and pegs
Pink blanket
Coloured gravel
Fairy dust
Grass seeds
Inspiration booklet

It seems like we missed the pink blanket in our box (I only just noticed this!). Do always check your contents before diving into the fun, so that you can let the company know as soon as if anything is missing.

It's not a big problem for us as we didn't use the clothes line and peg either (so most likely wouldn't have used the pink blanket). I do however love that they have included so many things to help you decorate the Fairy garden, and they are all so very nice!  You don't have to use everything of course, but it makes designing your fairy garden much easier.

The only other thing you'll need is soil.

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids
Inspirations included in the booklet
As a children's "toy", the quality of all items are fairly good (I'm not sure about the grass seeds as we didn't use them). The bowl is very sturdy (it won't bend if you hold it with one hand, even when it's filled), yet light enough for us to carry around in the house.

As the bowl is quite shallow, you can't really grow tall plants in the bowl, however, there are plenty of things you can grow apart from grass! Clovers, cress, or any succulent plants for example. Wild alpine strawberries are brilliant too and they smell so good! The booklet included not only guide you to setting up your fairy garden, it gives plenty of ideas to help you design your own unique fairy garden too!

I went plant shopping (because I didn't want to buy a big bag of soil for 2 fairy gardens, and definitely didn't want to use slug infested garden soil!) and found some really cute carnivorous plants (fly catcher!). Although eh, will they eat fairies?!

So I ended up with a couple of really pretty house plants (I used to know what they are called!), and although they are much taller than the bowl, they worked amazingly well in the fairy garden:

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids

Doesn't this look beautiful?! The orchids at the back make it look like an art piece, if I say so myself! You can go tall after all! There is still plenty of room for us to put more soil in to give the plants more nutrients, I just used what came with the plants.

Of course I'm not the only one who is having all the fun *cough*. Abby helped building the little cottage and setting up the layout. She is now the one watering the gardens. I haven't seen her this excited about watering the plants (no one cares about my beautiful orchids!).

We absolutely love the Fairy Garden! We aren't really the DIY doll house furniture kind, so all the things that came with the kit really helped us creating a pretty looking fairy garden. We love almost all the decorations: fairy Belle, her mouse companion, the toadstool, colourful stones, fairy dust and oyster shell! Seriously, oyster shell, how clever is that to add to the kit?!

I think we will plant some alpine strawberries next time. The bowl is large enough for them, and it's something the kids have been missing since we moved.

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids

The new Lilypad Gardens (RRP £19.99, suitable for age 4 years +) comes with:

3 part Flowerpot House (saucer, house and flowerpot)
Fairy Lily, frog figurines
3 floating lilypads
Sunflower windmill
packet of grass seeds
Instruction booklet

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids
Inspiring ideas for the Lilypad Gardens inside the booklet
The 3 part flowerpot is sturdy and well made, with beautiful designs. They stack lightly together (the weight from soil and plants will keep them in place, making them sturdier), and the back of the flowerpot and house has a drain with holes, so that excess water can flow down from the flowerpot, passing behind the house into the saucer, without wetting the fairy house. Very clever! You do need to water the moat though if you want the lily pads float around it, or you really have to drench the soil and plants to actually have enough water flowing down.

There is plenty of space inside the flowerpot, and it's fairy deep as well so you can plant taller plants. Again, we bought potted plants and transferred them into the flower pot to make it easier for us, but maybe next year we'll be sowing strawberry seeds!

The flowerpot can become quite heavy once the soil and plants are in, so it's easier if you do the planting without the house and saucer first. It's also easier to carry the flowerpot itself around without risking it falling off the house.

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids

Fairy play, Interplay My Fairy Garden, gardening for kids
Little butterfly shaped flowers!
We love the overall design of the Lilypad Gardens, with the moat, house and door that turn into a bridge. But because we aren't great with making our own miniature furniture or have any toy furniture around, our fairy Lily doesn't have anything inside her house! This is the main reason why we prefer the Fairy Garden over the Lilypad Gardens. But if you have a crafty child, I'm sure they'll be happy with both.

Abby also mentioned that the Fairy Garden has more open space so she can see more of the design, and it's also easier for her to water.

Overall we really love Interplay's My Fairy Garden planters. We love the designs and the things that comes with it. Of course for someone like me, I would appreciate if they can include compact soil as well! Each of the planters has something great about them, and they encourage children to get their little green fingers, creativity and imagination going. You can visit Interplay's official website to see the full My Fairy Garden range (they have Fairy doors too).