By Bonnie Phelps, WIR Contributor
Since the dawn of time, homes built off the ground have fascinated mankind. How many of us have watched the movie “Swiss Family Robinson” and thought how cool is that! Whether the appeal was to escape four-legged or two-legged predators, keep food from being stolen, avoid being ravaged by flood, fire or animal stampede or just because the view was great, we do know that treehouses have been used for shelter for thousands of years.
Southern Yellow Pine is a great wood to use for any outside project. It’s widely available in many different sizes at lumber yards and big box home improvement stores, comes in pressure-treated lumber options that reduce wood damage from pests and weather, and is inexpensive, durable and beautiful.
If you decide that you want a treehouse in your backyard here are a few considerations:
A quick internet search will turn up quite a number of sites with step-by-step instructions for planning and then building a treehouse for your backyard. Here are two sites that we found particularly helpful:
Since many backyards lack mature trees or if you don’t want to damage one of your mature trees, consider building your treehouse on stilts under or near the trees on your property. The effect is much the same as attaching the structure to a tree. Check out these two sites for plans and instructions for building a free-standing treehouse: Treehouse Guides and Free-Standing Tree House Plans.
For more ideas, there are several books on the market that come highly recommended. Black & Decker Complete Guide to Tree Houses available on Amazon – Kindle $12.99 Paperback $17.13 – and Treehouses and Other Cool Stuff: 50 Projects You Can Build on Amazon – Kindle $9.99 Paperback $16.38.
So, what are you waiting for? Head on down to your local lumber yard and give your kids the gift of learning to unplug and use their imaginations!
(Cover image via Shutterstock)