How to Build Your Children a Treehouse (402 words) squidoo & Video

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Build your children a treehouse and you will covet it so much that you will not be able to wait until bedtime, when at last you can climb into it to enjoy an early evening drink as the sun slowly sets.

The type of treehouse you build will be determined by the type and shape of the tree you wish to use. You may be fortunate enough to have a mature tree with three or four thick branches spreading out from the main trunk. If so then these will form a wonderfully stable foundation on which to build. However it is more likely that you will need to use wooden posts as supports (sunk a few feet into the ground and buried in concrete), so that the house is virtually self-supporting, although it appears to be sitting up in the tree. Whichever tree you select for a treehouse, make quite sure that its boughs tire healthy and strong and that there is no danger of breaking branches from above.

The distance from the treehouse platform to the ground is crucial. Obviously if your children are very little you will not want them climbing too high. You must also be sure that the ladder is firmly secured, its treads are not too far apart, and it is not set al too sleep an angle. Hope ladders are not suitable for little children.

If the children are really young you could buy a large wooden dog kennel, cut out holes for windows, glaze them with shatterproof plastic, paint it a pretty colour and place it in a low-growing tree, such as an apple. It may need extra supports but its fully-enclosed sides make it extremely sale.

Treehouses for older children can be higher and more open and, if the tree allows it, you could build more than one platform or storey. Use well seasoned, treated timber for the supports, base and cross beams, making sure that it is smooth and splinter free, floors, walls and roofs can be made from sheets of marine ply with the roof covered with shingles or roofing fell. The outside of the treehouse can be softened and camouflaged with woven hazel hurdles or clap boarding. You could set up a rope and pulley, so you can replenish provisions!

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