Summer blogger competition: Win a Tigercub Hideout House!

By Jordan on Jul 02 2014 | 0 Comments

 

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When a child steps outside and the fresh air hits their face, there’s no curbing their urge to play. Watching from the sidelines, curious parents may wonder what fantasy worlds have been conjured up amidst the chaos of toys, trinkets and knickknacks strewn across the grass. Is it a rocket ship? Is it a talent contest? Is it a tea party? Whatever it is, kids love the outdoors.

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Kids especially love a place to call their own. The Tigercub Hideout House is the ideal place for your little tiger cubs to hide away while you can be sure that they’re safe and happy. Stick on a ‘SOLD’ sign, hand them a key and watch their faces light up as they dive headfirst into years of memory-making. Adults will love it too, with its handsome Georgian-style window and ultra-safe rubber-protected hinges.

Built by us from premium European spruce, the 3’ x 5’ Hideout House is designed to go the distance. It features durable tongue-and-groove shiplap cladding, a weather-resistant basecoat and a heavy-duty mineral felt roof to shield your tiny tiger cubs from the elements. When the kids are grown-up, you can paint it white and add a window box for a charming New England-style hut in which to keep garden tools or even rabbits.


How to enter


Grab the kids and grab the crayons – entering is easy and fun! All you need to do is ask a child to draw a picture of their dream house. The child doesn't have to be yours and entries on behalf of friends are welcome. There are no limits or guidelines here: we want to see the craziest, most whimsical and avant-garde architectural marvels since Gaudi learnt to tile. You may find it easier to download and print our dream house template – available to download here.

The child can either draw their dream house by hand or on the computer. When it’s finished, ensure the drawing is labelled so we know what we’re looking at. If it isn’t labelled, we might not know if the blob on the roof is a pony or a helicopter.

Finally, upload the drawing in a blog post with the hashtag #TigercubHideout and send your blog link to tigersheds@tigerbox.co.uk along with a contact number.

Entries must be received by midnight on the closing date of 29-08-2014. A winner will be chosen from the most imaginative and creative entries.

If you win, we’ll contact you the following day to arrange free delivery within Great Britain*.  photo delivery2.jpg

*Certain postcodes may incur a £30.00 delivery fee. See our delivery map for details.


Entry checklist


1. Ask a child to draw their dream house. You can print the dream house template to make it easier! Make sure it is labelled;

 
2. Upload the picture (if drawn by hand, either scan it or take a photo) in a blog post;
 
3. Be sure to use the hashtag #TigercubHideout in your blog post;
 
4. Email a link to your blog post and a contact number to tigersheds@tigerbox.co.uk by midnight on the closing date of Friday, August 29.


Good luck!


            Terms & Conditions

  1. Entries must be submitted via blog post featuring the hashtag #TigercubHideout;
  2. One entry per blog;
  3. Copyright in the image submitted for this competition remains with the respective entrants. However, each entrant grants an irrevocable, perpetual licence to Tiger Sheds to feature the submitted image in any future promotional material;
  4. The competition will run from 01-07-14 until 29-08-14;
  5. Competition is open only to residents of Great Britain;
  6. Tiger Sheds is compliant with the Data Protection Act. We will not share your details with a third party.

 Competition featured on The Prize Finder. Win competitions at ThePrizeFinder.com

Dream House Template ©

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Categories: Competition , Playhouses , Summer

Garden and Flower Shows Guide 2013

By Danielle on May 13 2013 | 0 Comments

Here is the Tiger Sheds Guide to some of the best Garden and Flower Shows in 2013.

RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Date – 21st – 25th May 2013

Venue – Royal Hospital, London SW3 4SR

Ticket info  click here

Description –  The Chelsea Flower Show is the most famous flower show in the UK and 2013 sees it in its 100th year!  With 550 exhibitors displaying everything from garden furniture, to natural swimming pool construction, there really is something for everyone.

Find out more about RHS Chelsea Flower Show  

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Image source: http://www.royalgardenhotelblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/chelsea-flower-show.jpg

Hertfordshire County Show

Date – 25th & 26th May 2013

Venue – The Showground, AL3 7PT

Ticket info click here

Description – Herefordshire County Show is a family fun day out, comprising of a wide range of entertainment. There’s plenty to see and do for children, from the ‘Festival Circus’, to ‘Imps Motorcycle Display team’. Also, Jason Smyth will be bringing his ‘Adrenaline Tour’ to the show, expect dangerous, awe inspiring aerial tricks from the former Championship Moto Cross rider.

Find out more about Hertfordshire County Show

Country Fair at Bicton College

Date – 15th June 2013

Venue – Bicton College,
East Budleigh,
Budleigh Salterton,
Devon,
EX9 7BY

Ticket info click here

Description – This country show is an excellent fun-filled event for all the family, with a large range of activities taking place throughout the day.

There’s live music, hovercraft rides, a dog show  and much, much more!

Bicton College County Fair is the perfect mix of education and fun.

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Find out more about Bicton College

Gardeners’ World Live

Date – 12th – 16th June 2013

Venue - NEC Birmingham, B40 1NT

Ticket info click here

Description – Also incorporating the RHS Flower Show Birmingham, Gardener’s World Live, fuses show gardens, well known experts presenting and live music.

Food options are extensive, including the ‘MasterChef Restaurant’, where a pre-booking will ensure you are treated to a high-end lunch and also the ‘Food on the Go’ sections which can be found throughout the show. If a picnic is more your style, ‘Picnic Hill’ is the perfect place to take some time out for a relaxing family meal, overlooking the show gardens.

Find out more about Gardeners’ World Live

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Image source: http://www.bbcgardenersworldlive.com/

Woburn Abbey Garden Show

Date – 22nd & 23rd June 2013

Venue – Woburn Park, Bedfordshire MK17 9WA

Ticket info click here for 10% online reduction

Description – A garden show for gardeners of all levels and interests. Well known gardening personalities, Diarmuid Gavin and Pippa Greenwood, have been invited along to demonstrate and take part in a Q+A panel session.

Other entertainment comes in the form of live music and refreshments.

Find out more about Woburn Abbey Garden Show           

RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

Date – 9th – 14th July 2013

Venue – Hampton Court Palace, KT8 9AU

Ticket info  – click here

Description – Hampton Court Palace is a fabulous setting for a flower show and is an exciting alternative to the Chelsea Flower Show. Tickets are easier to get hold of and you’ll see a completely different variety of flowers in bloom to that on display at the CFS, which is held in Spring. Another bonus is that gardeners can actually buy flowers at this event.

The Hampton Court Flower Show is now the World’s largest flower show!

Find out more about RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

Harrogate Autumn Flower Show

Date – 13th – 15th Sept 2013

Venue– Great Yorkshire Showground, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG2 8NZ

Ticket info click here

Description – Harrogate Flower Show occurs both in Spring and Autumn and is often regarded as the most prestigious UK offering. Held at the Great Yorkshire Showground, it plays host to show gardens, garden shopping, garden art, an extensive food and catering area and much, much more.  There’s fun for children in the shape of nature trails, quizzes and colouring workshops, with a photography competition for adults.

Find out more about Harrogate Flower Show

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Landscape Show

Date – 24th & 25th Sept 2013

Venue – Battersea Park, SW11

Ticket info – register for free tickets

Description – This is a trade event for professionals working in the landscaping sector; architects, interior designers etc.

The event displays cutting edge techniques and new technology, relevant to the sector and is a must for anyone wanting to keep up to date with immerging practices.

Find out more about Landscape Show

RHS London Harvest Festival Show

Date – 8th – 9th October 2013

Venue – RHS Lindley Hall, Elverton Street, London SW1P 2PE

Ticket info  – click here

Description – This is a festival for growers to show off their produce. There’s competitions, tasting and live music. There are also plenty of opportunities to pick up your seeds for the next planting season.

Find out more about RHS London Harvest Festival

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Image source: http://www.rhs.org.uk/shows-events/rhs-london-flower-shows/rhs-london-autumn-harvest-show

Let us know in the comments if you have plans to attend any of these events, and which ones you're looking forward to the most!

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Plants are People Too

By Danielle on Apr 03 2013 | 0 Comments

Ever wondered why they call it a "Secret" garden? The reason stretches far beyond the mystery of their location. Plants all around us have been acting like humans and remain unsuspecting to the vast majority of us! Of what has been revealed from the dedicated research, there is still complex plant behaviour that just cannot be explained. Despite this, the advantages that certain behaviours bring to plants and their similarities with those of humans, may present opportunities to justify some of our own behaviours, be they good or bad.

According to Plants it's ok to...

...Talk to Yourself, as Long as there are Plants Around

It's no secret that plants possess an extraordinary ability to communicate with each other. In fact the green thumbs of the world, including his Royal Highness, the Prince of Wales, have even cultivated the art of conversing with plants themselves. Research has suggested that certain types of sound wave may possibly interfere with the normal activity of some plant genes. Comparing sound exposure and the lack of it to pea plants revealed that the stimulus of sound might actually lead to greater plant mass. While certainly not conclusive just yet, this phenomenon remits the attention of keen gardeners and much more research from botanists.

...Fake an Illness

The "Elephant Ear" plant, which can be found in the everyday garden, mimics being ill to discourage mining moths from eating its otherwise healthy leaves. The process is known as Variegation and is commonly caused when plants lose their green chlorophyll cells, making them appear white. Naturally a plant lacking chlorophyll cells would have its ability to photosynthesise restricted and appear weak. Feigning this sickness detracts insect pests from eating plants and can strengthen their long-term success. So if it's photo day at school and an acne outburst leaves you resembling a variegated leaf, pulling a "sickie" might be an effective course of action.

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A leaf damaged by mining moths (left) compared to one faking it (right)

Image source: BBC

...Be Picky

Plants are very selective when it comes to choosing mates. They have a self-incompatibility system that helps them reject unwanted pollen. Often this is to avoid accepting the pollen of other species that can result in infertile off-spring or in some cases to avoid being fertilised by their own pollen. The tomato, tobacco, and egg plants have been subjected to the bulk of this research. While the reasons for the incompatibility system are understood, the understanding of it at a molecular level isn't. The mechanisms behind recognising wanted and unwanted pollen still remains a mystery. As humans, it seems we can take comfort in the fact that although our reasons for disqualifying someone as a potential mate may appear irrational and inexplicable, it just might serve us well in the long run!

...Be Shy

Mimosa Pudica, also known as the “touch-me-not” plant, is very shy to physical contact. In fact the slightest prod or gentle shake can cause it to close its leaves, and remain closed for up to half an hour! Its leaf cells react to pressure and transfer water to their adjacent cells. Cells with reduced water levels lose their strength in their cell wall causing the leaf to close. It is thought that this shy behaviour is used to surprise pests with their rapid change and scare them off. It just goes to show, sometimes being shy means being safe.

...Reach For the Sky!

If only metaphorically, this is another trait that humans and plants share in common. Plants grow up towards the sun to fuel their ever important process of photosynthesis. The plant hormone, auxin, promotes plant growth. It accumulates on the plant cells that are in the absence of light. Therefore the shaded side of a plant tends to grow faster than the side in the sunlight, causing the plant to grow towards the sun.  Their leaves which reach out to the sun can now photosynthesis and are rewarded with precious glucose, in contrast to fame and riches which humans may be rewarded with from reaching for the sky!

The personification of plant behaviour doesn't stop there either. There are plants that exist which have been known to cry out for help with chemicals, change their appearance to attract pollinators and even establish a neighbourhood watch!

Sources

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-478558/So-Charles-right--talk-plants-scientists-discover.html

http://news.bbc.co.uk/earth/hi/earth_news/newsid_8108000/8108940.stm

http://www.aspb.org/PressReleases/mate_choice.cfm

http://www.kuriositas.com/2012/04/touch-me-not.html

http://www.vib.be/en/news/Pages/That-is-why-plants-grow-towards-the-light!.aspx

 

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Five Garden Resolutions for the New Year

By Danielle on Jan 03 2013 | 0 Comments

 

As it is just the beginning of a New Year it may be too soon to actually get in the garden right now, but there’s nothing to stop you planning ahead and preparing for the up-coming seasons. It may be time to have a change in your gardening routine as well, so here are five New Year Resolutions you could try out this year. 

Plant Native

Plants from your native region find it much easier to adapt to harsh weather conditions, and with the recent history of dramatic weather experienced in the UK this is a major plus point. Native plants also help to sustain local wildlife by attracting local insects that pollinate wild plants as well as the flowers in your garden.

2.       Organise your Shed

Even if you cannot actually do any gardening in the winter months there’s nothing to stop you preparing for Spring and organising your shed. Throw away any unwanted items and store larger items, like bicycles and lawnmowers, in an easily accessible place with no obstacles in the way. Create a tool rack by nailing a piece of wood to the shed wall with other nails sticking out of it. This is a very cheap and easy way to tidy up the shed that shouldn’t take long at all and will make storing your tools far more efficient. 

3.       Replace your Bark Mulch

      Although bark mulch is cheap and easy to install it needs replacing every year or two, by using rock mulch you will not have to replace the mulch as often saving money in the long run. The larger sizes of rock mulch also make it easier to blow away any leaves or debris you don’t want in your beds.

4.       Composting

Compost bins don’t require a lot of space and they can be picked up from any garden centre or online. By turning your garden waste, leaves, and kitchen scraps into compost you are creating a free source of nutrient rich fertiliser for your plants. Not only are you creating vital food for your plants though you are also reducing the amount of recyclable household waste you dispose of, so composting is not only good for your plants it’s great for the environment.

5.       Sustainable Gardening

      Try and add at least one new method of sustainable gardening into your routine. Using at least one sustainable gardening technique will not only reduce the negative affects you may be having on the environment, but it will probably also improve the quality of your soil. There are numerous methods of employing sustainable gardening techniques; such as excluding chemical fertilisers, or installing rain barrels to catch water from your roof that would otherwise be lost to runoff and diverted to streams and drains. 

 

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Tips for Gardening with Kids

By Danielle on Jul 25 2012 | 0 Comments

 

Involving kids with gardening can be a great, fun experience for everyone regardless of their age. Children can really get engrossed in planting and caring for flowers – even those with shorter attention spans!

Most kids can’t get enough of the anticipation and excitement of waiting for the seed to sprout and for the plant to grow, and it’s also a great way for them to learn about the process of growing plants and photosynthesis. It’s a lot easier to learn by doing after all.

Gardening has plenty of other benefits too. For one, it’s an outdoor activity, meaning it’ll peel them away from the TV, and it’s also a team effort that everyone can enjoy contributing to. Parenting experts all say that in order to have a strong bond with your children, you need spend time on an activity that is enjoyable for both adults and children.

Gardening can allow time to really talk about things, regardless of how important or trivial. More importantly, it allows you both to have fun!

Gardening doesn’t require a huge garden or allotment contrary to what some people might think. In fact, it can actually be beneficial to start out with smaller spaces such as window boxes and restricted areas. It needn’t cost a lot of money either – you don’t need to buy anything special or fancy, and if you grow your own fruit and veg then you’ll ultimately be making a large saving!

Digging for potatoes

Here’s some tips on gardening with the kids:

Gardening for Kids

There’s a great deal there for children to learn when it comes to gardening. See if they can tell you the process behind plant growth, whilst making sure that they know to water the garden regularly and observe the growth.

-          Involve them by regularly asking them questions: where is best to plant these? What seed will grow here? What should we do next? What does it say in the instructions? The key is to make them feel involved and feel valued.

-          Explain to your children that plants need time to grow and will require lots of sunlight and water. Try conducting an experiment to really show them how this works – grow three separate pots of cress. Place one in sunlight with plenty of water, one in a dark cupboard with plenty of water, and one in sunlight with no water. Have the kids keep an eye on all three to compare how each pot grows. 

-          Photograph each stage of the plant’s growth. This will help you and the children effectively document all of your hard work!

-          Explain to younger children that the seeds have popped underground and have been covered up to sleep, helping them understand that they need to be gentle with them and treat them with care.

-          Children will have a particular fondness for plants which stimulate the senses; plants with soft leaves and bright flowers, aromatic herbs, scented flowers, grasses and leaves that rustle when blown, etc. These can be particularly beneficial for children with special needs and requirements, as they will be encouraged to enjoy the garden and its surroundings.

-          Plants that attract wildlife can be very exciting! Wildflowers are a sure-fire way to attract bees and butterflies, which can help the rest of the crop of fruit/vegetables.

-          Involve the children with the composting process. Keep a small box next to the kitchen sink in which to dispose of kitchen waste. Make a chart that lists what you can compost and what you can’t so that the kids know what exactly to put in the box. This will also prepare them for recycling later in life.

-          Educate them on the insects you find in the garden and their benefits/disadvantages. For example, hedgehogs and toads are good as they will eat slugs and snails, as are worms as they create holes in the soil. Let them know of the ways we can control pests in a responsible manner through our responsible management of garden pests guide!

-          Have the kids get creative and make plant labels to mark the spots where seeds have been planted.

cress

Tips

Start small. Try not to be overly ambitious and start with a small, manageable project for you and your children. A good starting point is sunflowers or potatoes in a bucket. Cress egg heads are also a good start, as it grows quickly and can often be eaten in salads after just a few days.

Wear old clothes. Most children love making a mess, so it might be wise to keep some old clothes at hand.

Choose carefully. Plants that require constant maintenance are not a wise idea. If they shrivel and die after a couple of days then this might demotivate the kids.

Allow independence. You can give the kids their own small section in the garden where they can keep their own pots without ruining the flowerbeds. Just ensure that their allocated areas get enough sunlight – if they don’t, then nothing will grow and they may become disinterested in gardening. Younger children might want to name their plants in order to form more of a bond and become more involved.

Remember – you don’t need to take a trip to the nearest garden centre straight away. Tools and seed trays are hardly crucial until later, so for now, try starting with margarine tubs, yoghurt pots, and any other small containers you might find lying around the house.

A lollypop stick can make a great plant label and can be used when dipping out seedlings. Instead of fancy trays with separate sections, you’ll find just as much use in empty egg cartons.

For help with watering smaller plants, consider buying a water gun so that the children provide enough water without drowning them with watering cans. This way, even the younger children can get involved. And let’s face it – what child doesn’t love a water fight?

And some more..

If you’re not a fan of gardening but your children have shown a keen interest, then enlist support from other family members and friends. For example, lots of grandparents enjoy being in the garden and it can be a nice bonding activity between them and their grandchildren.

-          Buy your children their own miniature set of gardening tools and watering can so they can copy you and pick up the basics.

-          Prepare for mess! The gardening process will allow them freedom to really get their hands dirty – but at least it’s safely contained outside of the house!

-          Prepare for sunny weather by supplying sun cream and hats. Even if it’s not sunny, small children will require skin protection, particularly in the middle of the day.

 

 

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Categories: Garden , gardening , Summer