The Owner-Builder Network

Magical Wheelbarrow Fairy Garden: 5 Practical Steps

Last Updated on June 7, 2024 by teamobn

Wheelbarrow Fairy Garden

Got an old wheelbarrow? Why not turn it into a DIY fairy garden? A great addition to your yard!

This fun gardening activity is one that you could do together with the kids. Or perhaps let them do all the work! 🙂

If you’re like most people, you probably have an old wheelbarrow sitting in your garage or shed that you never use. Well, we’re here to tell you that it’s time to dust off that wheelbarrow and put it to good use!

Once it’s clean and dry, you can use it for all sorts of things around the house, from gardening to DIY projects. Trust us, your old gardening cart will come in handy more than you ever thought possible!

DIY Wheelbarrow Fairy Garden

Beautiful DIY wheelbarrow fairy garden designs.

If you’re looking for some charming DIY ideas to get started with this project for your garden, look no further than these gorgeous wheelbarrow fairy gardens! These creative designs are sure to inspire you to make your own enchanting little world.

Whether you want to go all out with a wheelbarrow overflowing with colourful flowers and tiny trinkets or keep it simple with a few well-placed plants and stones, there’s a wheelbarrow fairy garden design here for everyone. So get ready to get creative, and start planning your own magical garden today!

Click on any image to start the lightbox display. Use your Esc key to close the lightbox. You can also view the images as a slideshow if you prefer 😎

Building a Wheelbarrow Fairy Garden

Adding this fairy garden is a great way to add some extra colour and life to your garden. Here’s what you’ll need:


  • Old Wheelbarrow
  • Spray Paint
  • Soil
  • Miniature House
  • Miniature Toys
  • Small Plants
  • Pebbles
  • Popsicle Sticks
  • Battery-operated LED tealites


  • Shovel


It’s time to get your hands dirty and get that old wheelbarrow out of the garage!

1. Clean the old rusted wheelbarrow

First, give it a good wash – you’ll be surprised at how much dirt and grime has built up over the years. Let it dry in the sun for a few hours, and then it will be ready to use again.

2. Paint with yellow

We suggest painting this yellow for a fun and cheerful project. Use any colour you wish, however, to personalize it to your liking.

3. Make sure there’s a drain

If you’re looking for an easy way to drain a wheelbarrow, this is the way to go. Rusted ones are perfect for this because they’re already falling apart. Plus, they’re easy to find since they’re so common.

4. Add some soil and plants

Now that the paint is dry, you can add some soil to the top of the fairy garden. Then, add your favourite cute plants here.

5. Add the fairy design

One way to add a fairy touch to your garden is to add an old doll house, miniature people, cars and fences. You can have these painted first before adding them to your design. Whatever you add here, make sure it blends with your favourite plants. This will look great displayed in your centre garden.
If you want to go all out with your fairy garden, you can also add in some small solar lights or LED string lights. This will give your garden a magical glow at night. You can also add in some birdhouses or feeders to attract fairies to your garden! 😉

Now, enjoy your beautiful DIY wheelbarrow fairy garden! 🙂

Thanks to Red Shed Vintage for this great project.

Choosing the Right Plants for Your Wheelbarrow Fairy Garden

Creating a wheelbarrow fairy garden is an enchanting way to bring a touch of magic to your outdoor space. Choosing the right plants is crucial for maintaining the miniature scale and ensuring that your garden thrives. Here’s how to select the perfect greenery for your wheelbarrow fairy garden.

Size and Scale

The key to a successful wheelbarrow fairy garden is selecting plants proportionate to the wheelbarrow size and the miniature accessories you plan to use. Opt for dwarf or miniature varieties that won’t outgrow the space. Small succulents, dwarf marigolds, and baby tears are excellent choices that maintain the right scale and add texture to your garden.

Light and Water Requirements

Consider the amount of sunlight your wheelbarrow fairy garden will receive. If it’s in full sun, choose plants like sedums or small herbs, which thrive in brighter conditions. Ferns and mosses can be perfect for shadier spots, as they prefer less direct sunlight and add a lush, green look to your fairy garden. Ensuring that all plants in your wheelbarrow have similar water needs is also crucial for ease of maintenance.

Aesthetic Appeal

A wheelbarrow fairy garden should be a feast for the eyes with various colors, textures, and heights. Use flowering plants like lobelia or pansies to introduce vibrant colors, while adding variegated foliage like ivy for contrast and depth. Arrange plants to create a mini landscape – taller plants can form a backdrop, while groundcovers can fill in the front, creating a lush, layered look.

By choosing the right plants, you can ensure that your wheelbarrow fairy garden is beautiful and sustainable. It’s a delightful project that combines gardening skills with creativity, resulting in a magical miniature world that can enchant visitors of all ages.

Maintenance Tips for Wheelbarrow Fairy Garden

Maintaining a wheelbarrow fairy garden ensures that it remains a charming and vibrant feature in your garden. Regular care will help your miniature landscape thrive and continue to enchant visitors with its whimsy. 

Here are some essential maintenance tips for keeping your wheelbarrow fairy garden in top shape.

Regular Watering

Wheelbarrow fairy gardens often contain a mix of small plants with varying water needs. It’s crucial to establish a consistent watering schedule to keep the soil evenly moist but not waterlogged. Since the soil in wheelbarrows can dry out quickly, especially in warmer weather, checking the moisture level daily is a good practice. Use a spray bottle for watering to avoid displacing the miniature plants and decorations with a strong stream of water.

Pruning and Deadheading

To maintain the miniature scale and aesthetic of your wheelbarrow fairy garden, regular pruning and deadheading of plants are necessary. This will not only encourage healthier growth but also prevent plants from overshadowing the tiny elements that make your fairy garden special. Snip off any dead or overgrown foliage and remove wilted flowers to keep your garden looking tidy and vibrant.

Monitoring for Pests and Diseases

Like any garden, wheelbarrow fairy gardens are susceptible to pests and diseases. Keep an eye out for signs of infestation or illness, such as discolored leaves, sticky residue, or visible bugs. Treat problems early with appropriate organic pesticides or by removing affected plants to prevent spread. Maintaining a healthy garden environment will help minimize these issues.

Seasonal Adjustments

Adjust your care routine based on the seasons. In hot summer months, your wheelbarrow fairy garden may require more frequent watering and partial shading during the hottest part of the day. In contrast, winter may call for protection against frost or excessive rain, especially if your wheelbarrow is metal and prone to rusting. Consider moving the wheelbarrow to a sheltered location if extreme weather is expected.

Fertilizing Wisely

Even miniature gardens need nutrients, especially since they’re often planted in limited soil volumes. Use a diluted, balanced, liquid fertilizer to feed your plants every 4-6 weeks during the growing season. Be cautious with the amount; a little goes a long way in a small space like a wheelbarrow fairy garden, and over-fertilization can harm the delicate plants.

Refreshing the Soil

Over time, the soil in your wheelbarrow fairy garden can become compacted or depleted of nutrients. Every year or two, consider refreshing the soil. Carefully lift the plants and replace the old soil with fresh potting mix that’s suitable for container gardening. This can rejuvenate your plants and give them a new burst of life.

Cleaning and Repairing Accessories

The charming effect of a wheelbarrow fairy garden often comes from its miniature accessories. Periodically check and clean these tiny items. Remove any dirt, debris, or cobwebs with a soft brush or cloth. Repair or replace any items that are damaged or have lost their appeal, keeping the fairy tale aesthetic alive and well.

Weed Control

Even in a fairy garden, weeds can find a way to sprout and can quickly overrun the miniature setting. Regularly inspect for and gently remove any weeds, taking care not to disturb the roots of your desired plants. This helps maintain the aesthetics and health of your wheelbarrow fairy garden, ensuring that the focus remains on your chosen plants and whimsical decorations.

Checking Drainage

Proper drainage is crucial to prevent root rot and ensure plant health in your wheelbarrow fairy garden. Make sure that any drainage holes in the wheelbarrow are clear and unblocked. If water seems to be pooling at the bottom, consider adding a layer of gravel or small stones before filling it with soil to enhance drainage.

By following these maintenance tips, you can ensure that your wheelbarrow fairy garden remains a delightful and magical addition to your outdoor space for years to come. Regular care not only preserves the beauty and health of the garden but also enhances your enjoyment of the miniature landscape you’ve created.


Creating a wheelbarrow fairy garden offers a delightful blend of gardening and imagination, turning an old wheelbarrow into a captivating miniature landscape. With the right choice of plants, decorations, and regular maintenance, your fairy garden will thrive and enchant visitors of all ages. This project not only beautifies your outdoor space but also provides a creative outlet for both adults and children to enjoy together.

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