How to Make a Fairy Garden

Childhood magic is a precious gift. I believe that in today’s fast paced, success driven world, it is more important than ever to protect AND nurture the magic in our children’s lives. The excitement my Kitty feels when she discovers that fairies have left her a silvery message on a leaf… the delight in a pearly dewdrop left behind by Mother Moon. These whimsical thoughts dwell in childhood’s imagination and yet the magic they spark will live in her heart long after she knows that it is only the snail who left the silvery trail and condensation that left the dewdrop.

My mother made sure that there was magic in my own childhood and I endeavor to do the same for my children. One of the ways we nurture childhood magic in our home is through Kitty’s fairy garden. She pays outside in her fairy garden often, almost daily. She’s in the warm sun, breathing in the fresh air. It is her special place where her imagination can roam freely, no one is listening to her (except the fairies, of course) ad no one is interfering with her. Her Fairy Garden is where her felted fairies and gnomes get married, her tiny horses gallop freely and her little wooden birds build their nests.



Kitty and I made her fairy garden together. We started with a large whisky barrel but you can also use a much smaller container such as a planter, a tin basin or even a salad bowl. Make sure that the container has a hole in the bottom for proper drainage. Drill a hole if your container doesn’t have one. You will be watering your fairy garden often and it is important that it can drain adequately.
Once you have picked out your container, fill it with potting soil. Leave it about half a foot deep.



Next, let your child plan out her fairy garden. Kitty drew a detailed map, indicating where she wanted a hill and a valley, were the pond would go and even where she wanted the path to be placed. Making the map gave her ownership, made the garden hers.


Drawing a map of our Fairy Garden


We propped the plan up in the papyrus and got to work landscaping our garden. We created the hill by mounding the soil and the valley by digging a groove.


Teddy, Kitty’s little brother, was in charge of finding earthworms in the vegetable garden to put in Kitty’s fairy garden. He was very good at his job and found quite a few…



Earthworms are optional. They are great soil aerators and help maintain good soil drainage (plus, they give the little one something to do so that he doesn’t keep destroying the soil hill his sister has, so carefully, built…)


Now, it is time to plant the ‘trees’ and plants. When choosing plants for your fairy garden, be mindful of the scale you are after. You want it to look like a miniature garden. Moss is the main ground cover and too many other plants may detract from the mossy atmosphere. Let your child’s imagination run wild as she chooses plants that will attract the fairies in your neighborhood. We used an immature Tea Tree for our tree. We know that it will want to grow very big and we need to trim it often to keep it stunted. The tree sets the scale of the garden. If your garden is in a smaller container, a shrub will have the same effect as a tree. Also, keep in mind the color combinations… silvers, light greens, dark greens, browns… we like as many colors as possible as it adds texture and interest to our fairy garden. Another consideration when choosing your plants is to make sure the combinations all like the same amount of sun and water. If you are going to be using moss, remember that moss likes sun to part shade and lots of water… add other plants that like the same. If you are going for a desert garden appeal, pebbles, rocks and various cacti look wonderful, but do make sure that too many prickles won’t deter your little one from playing in his garden. Here are the plants Kitty chose…



When your plants are laid out, set in your pond. Your pond can be any small container. We used a coconut shell as we love the natural texture it adds but you can use a glass, porcelain or metal bowl too… anything that lends itself to the magic and natural feel of your garden. Do not place your stones until you have planted the moss.


Creative play in our Fairy Garden


With the pond in place, it’s time to plant the moss. Carefully break off chunks of moss and contour it over the landscaped hill and valley, around the pond and the tree. Remember to leave space for the path.
Arrange the rocks and pebble path and, all at once, your fairy garden looks like the magical wonderland that it is.


Beautiful Fairy Garden


Water your Fairy Garden well…


A Fairy Garden for the imagination


Put all the little fairy and gnome bits and pieces in place… a toadstool rock, a miniature table and chair, a nest.


Red rock toadstool


Your Fairy Garden is complete but your little one will add to it every so often… a special feather, a log and, of course, their imagination to make it magic!


Magical Fairy Garden


We’ve seen many amazing things in our Fairy Garden… a minute mushroom circle appeared one day, a tiny downy feather from a baby bird was left on the moss another. These things, I had nothing to do with and even I, am starting to believe.


Kitty’s fairy garden is her kingdom and, in it, magic reigns!



If you are in the spirit of spring fairy gardening, be sure to check out my fairy garden page where you’ll find LOTS of fairy garden inspiration and magic.

I hope I’ve inspired you to make a Fairy Garden with your own little ones and enter it into our Fairy Garden Contest. Not only is it incredibly fun to make a miniature garden like this, but there are such AWESOME prizes to be won.

The Fairy Garden Contest 2016 is open for entries from April until August, 2016. Enter here.


Fairy Garden Contest 2016 :: The Magic Onions ::

Also, have a look at my Fairy Gardens shop for the BEST fairy garden accessories.

Blessings and magic,


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31 Responses

  1. Thanks for providing such detailed instructions. I just might be able to try this one with my big explorer (5-1/2 yrs). He recently built his own fairy house and has come to believe in the magic of fairies. This would be a wonderful addition.

  2. Magical! It reminded me of the fairy garden I created with my Dad as a child in amongst the rockery, in the back garden. Beautiful memory, thank you for giving me the opportunity to remember. I am wondering where we can make one in our home now….

  3. So beautifull! Magical! And I love the way you’re speaking of your children and caring about their creativity and imagination! And thanks for your lovely words on our blog.

  4. These are so fabulous! We tried it in the past, but our moss died. We ha gathered it from the woods. Is there a secret to keeping the moss alive? i would love to try this again!

  5. Adorable idea! My daughter’s and I love fairies too, I did a post a few weeks ago and they did a paper garden fairy designs, as well as hunting down flowers and other nature materials to design it, and just created until their hearts were content. I love doing all kinds of activities with them. :-)
    Thanks for sharing!

  6. I just love your blog!!! I have it open in one of my Mozilla tabs all the time. :)

    Would you allow me to repost this post on my blog and post a link in the post and in the right column? I have a blog, where I publish waldorf related subjects (I just moved to a new url) and daily Fairy messages.

    You can find it on the old blog is on

  7. There certainly is such magic to be found in childhood and in nature, it is a rich blessing to share these moments with our little ones! Your fairy home is stunning, we too appreciate creating these magical spaces for our fairy friends!

  8. So magical! I love your fairy garden!
    We have a fairy garden in our garden too, made out of an old sandpit.
    We made a little wattle and daub house as part of our history project last term and it makes a lovely fairy home now.

  9. This is one of the most fabulous ideas I have seen and as soon as we are all feeling better, my girls and I will attempt to make one for our yard!! THANKS!

  10. Thank you for this … it lifted me up on a day when I discovered that ‘our fairies’ had been stolen from the woodland near our home. Where a footpath wanders through a copse of trees by a stream there is a perfect circle of trees, the sort of trees with holes in them and lots of low down branches. It was so obviously the perfect place for fairies that I put some there and my boys, and visiting children, delighted in them. Every time I had chance to walk the dog alone the fairies moved around their circle, somehow, but now they have been taken away … either by a curious child or by someone who has lost touch with, and respect for, magic.
    Your ‘fairy garden’ idea might just be what I need to recapture the magic!

    1. Hi Victoria, thanks for getting in touch. Yes, it was mostly my daughter who made the fairy garden. Such fun. I’d love to see a photo of yours when you are done. Your blog is BEAUTIFUL!!!!
      XO Donni

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