It’s planting time! I cannot tell you how excited I am for planting and spring and NO MORE SNOW! We live in Michigan and definitely had our fair share of snow this year. I think we even set a new record too! I have to say that I don’t think I have ever experienced cold days in April and May until this year. Cool days, yes, but not cold. But that is behind us, now on to summer!
La dee, dee da, doobie do be do ba…….
I got a little carried away there with thoughts of summer, Olaf, Elsa, and all their friends. Anyway, back to my topic: planting.
Today is our planting day; all seedlings will be transplanted as well as other seeds sown directly into the garden. This is my first garden so I am excited to see what happens this summer! I really wanted to have an herb garden and was planning on using window boxes for it but we realized last night that the ones we had seemed too small for the amount of herbs that we wanted to plant. So I started trying to find odd household items to plant herbs inside. My father-in-law is a car dealer so he has a bunch of extra car parts laying around, which include a bunch of tires. I have seen a lot of plants planted in tires and thought it was cool but my mother-in-law was concerned about the rubber around things we would be eating. So my container search continued.
There were also old pallets stacked behind the barn and I remembered seeing pallet gardens and loving the look of them. The only problem was that I needed landscaping fabric for the back. Have no fear, Papa B (the FIL’s grandpa title) is here; he overheard me and said he saw a roll in the barn (really need to start asking him for DIY supplies more often; there is no telling what is in the barn or basement). Therefore, how could I refrain from the desired pallet garden? It was practically calling my name! I got up bright and early this morning, made some blueberry pancakes for those who were still slumbering, and got to work. You ready for a tutorial?
How to make a pallet herb garden
You will need a pallet (look for HT stamped on the side;it means heat treated rather than chemically treated), landscaping fabric, a staple gun with staples, potting mix or garden soil, and your herbs. By the way, my pallet was a mini one, probably max 3×4 feet. I love the size since I am new to gardening and don’t want to overwhelm myself but very well may use a bigger one in the future so I can plant more types of herbs.
From the tutorials I looked at, it’s a good idea to clean and air dry your pallet before use but I didn’t. Yes, I am lazy. It was clean enough and I really don’t think whatever organic matter or bugs are living inside are going to hurt my plants. You will want to place your pallet face down on the ground.
Tightly staple the landscaping fabric to the back of the pallet, making sure you have some overhang on all four sides. Also, put a few staples down the middle of the back (there should be a support piece that you can staple into) so that the dirt doesn’t move around as much once filled. Once your fabric is secured on the back, go ahead and staple the sides and one end. You can leave the other end open and plant some herbs in it or you can close it off with the fabric. I chose to close it off for now and when I stand it up I will take the fabric off and plant some peppermint.
Here is my pallet before I added the top piece. Next lay your pallet face up and fill with dirt.
I used a mixture of garden/flower solid and top soil. I think I went thru about two normal size bags of soil (I think they were 40# bags but I am not positive). Oh and if you have a little one running around, it’s probably best that they don’t eat the dirt. Just a thought 😉
Make sure to pack the dirt under the boards of the pallet leaving little trenches between the slats. Now you are ready to plant.
Water your plants a little to soften them up before planting. Then plant your herbs between the pallet slats. It will be a tight squueze but you want the plants to fit snugly so they don’t fall out.
I planted Dill, Oregano, Parsley, Basil, Chives, and Stevia. I will be adding Peppermint to the top in about a week as well. If you want to go ahead and plant in the top of the pallet, just put your plants in there before filling the whole thing with dirt so that you aren’t left with having to scoop out a bunch of dirt to squeeze your plants it. I definitely planted them closer than suggested but I want the pallet to be overflowing with herbs. Give your new garden a nice long drink and set aside in a sunny spot.
Many bloggers suggest that you leave the pallet flat for three weeks to let the roots settle so the dirt won’t fall out. Others say they stood it up right away and it was fine, so use your judgment. I have decided I will leave mine for a week then stand it up.
And there you have it! An easy DIY that is also green by growing your own food and recycling objects to grow things in! What random objects have you grown plants in?
Do you have a garden experience or DIY of your own? Feel free to share below!