Make a Simple Garden Swing

Is there anything more fun than gliding through the air on a swing?

Is there anything more fun than gliding through the air on a swing? Whether it's soaring like a bird, piloting a plane, or blasting off to the moon, garden swings spark the imagination for fabulous adventures! The good news is, you don't need to build an elaborate playset to add a swing to your garden. A simple, strong rope, a thick stick, and a sturdy tree limb will do the trick.

What You'll Need:

  • 2- to 3-inch diameter stick, approximately 2 feet long
  • ½-inch diameter rope (such as 3-strand polyester), length to be determined by the height of the tree limb
  • Saw or pruners
  • Knife to cut the rope
  • Lighter (optional)
  • Ladder (optional)

How to Make a Garden Swing

1. Look for a strong tree in the garden with a sturdy, thick branch that will support the weight of the swinger. Make sure the area around the base of the tree is free from shrubs or other obstacles.

2. Find a strong, thick stick for the swing. You don't want it to be too smooth—a few bumps, along with the bark, will help keep the rope from sliding out of place.

3. Cut the stick so it's approximately 2 feet long.

4. Determine how long the rope needs to be to tie onto the tree branch so the swing is about 2 to 3 feet off the ground, depending on the height of the child. Cut the rope, making sure to leave enough material to tie to both the branch and the stick.

5. If you've chosen a polyester rope, use a lighter to melt the cut ends so they don't fray.

6. Use a binding knot (like the clove hitch knot) to attach the rope to the center of the stick.

7. Using a ladder if needed, attach the rope to the tree branch with a bowline knot. Make sure it's not too close to the tree trunk so there's plenty of room to swing freely.

8. Double-check that all knots are tight and safe before swinging.

9. Let the swinger hop on, sitting on the stick with legs on either side of the rope and holding the rope.

10. Give your high-flyer a boost—and watch her soar!

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