A year of Nature Craft and Play – C. Hughes & B. Goddard-Hill

A brand-new book A Year of Nature Craft and Play has just been released and the authors have written an article just for Ruralmums!

Gardening expert Catherine Hughes and child therapist Becky Goddard-Hill have collated 52 wonderful nature craft and play ideas in their latest book to inspire kids to get outside and have fun. The book is aimed primarily at the 7-12 age groups but the activities are fab for all the family!

The authors are huge believers in making the most of the free and fabulous resources of the natural world and today it’s all about apples!

Apples are amazing and abound in gardens during the autumn months. Here are some delightfully creative things that can be done with them.

It doesn’t matter a bit off they are overripe, bruised or bird pecked, they still have great creative value!

Apple printing

Apples can be washed and sliced in half and used to make awesome prints. And, due to their firm and solid shape, they are easy to handle too. This makes for a wonderful picture or even wrapping paper for a lovely home-made touch.

Bird feeders

Apples can be sliced in half, then smeared in peanut butter and rolled in bird seed to make tasty and much welcomed bird feeders too. Simply slide a skewer or knitting needle through the apple then thread through a string to hang from the trees.

Apple garland

To dry apples, slice them thinly and keep the skin on. Then, spread in a single layer on a lined baking tray.

If you want your apple garland to smell lovely then soak the apples in lemon juice for about 10 mins first and dust them with cinnamon before placing them in the oven.

Bake at 225°F for up to 2 hours.

You can use an upholstery needle to thread the dried apple slices onto twine, or use a knitting needle to make holes and run a red ribbon through. You can also dry fallen pears to make your garland even prettier.

An alternative to making a garland is to thread your apple slices onto a wire and make a wreath to hang on the door.

Fallen apples are the perfect craft resource.

Do check out A Year of Nature Crafts and Play for lots more eco ideas for family fun.

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