Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Pallet Gardening

Now here's a genius idea, that was definitely not mine, to get yourself a raised garden bed in a jif! It's super awesome if you live someplace where space is limited, you can't dig up a garden, or for super cheap if you don't want to buy lumber! I chose this route because we rent so can't dig up a garden, plus space (where the sunshine is) is limited. Enter the pallet garden.

Okay, honestly, like most projects it's not exactly effortless. It took me a couple weeks to gather my pallets, the supplies, and finally put it together. But it's totally worth. My peas, onions, and lettuce are coming up already. My little babies are growing! 

Here's how it's done.

You will need:
  • Pallets (unpainted ones!)
  • Garden cloth
  • Staple gun
  • Hammer

Step 1) Prep your pallets by removing any unwanted boards. Bear in mind you can use either side as your top depending on what you will be growing. Notice in my photos I have some more open and some with more boards.

Step 2) Measure out your garden cloth leaving enough so to cover the sides and a bit on top to fold over. I had to cut two strips per pallet because my cloth wasn't wide enough. 

Step 3) Fold the cloth over and staple like crazy! Sometimes the staples don't go in all the way, so hence the hammer. 

Step 4) Continue to tuck, fold, and staple until the cloth is all nice and secured.

Step 5) Move your pallet to the location it will be living. 

Step 6) Once it's situated fill with dirt! And plant like crazy.

  • It is totally possible to grow root vegetables in pallets, you will just need to use two pallets stacked on top of each other. In that case, just make sure to align the slats so the roots have room to grow and secure the fabric like before. Here you can see how I have double pallets and single pallets.

You can see my snap peas coming up and a few onions as well. Yippee!!

Here's a little reference guide for which plants prefer double pallets and which prefer singles:

Double Pallets:


Single Pallets:

Swiss Chard

That hopefully gives you a little idea even though the list isn't exhaustive. 

Other tips:

  • Now, I am no pallet expert, but apparently you should look for the letters HT printed on the pallet which means it was treated with heat and not with chemicals. Important, because those chemicals would just be leaching into your plants. 
  • I have also read that bleaching the pallets before use is a good idea because mold growth is quite common on them. As well as who knows what kinds of other junk is on there depending on the pallets life. I, for one, do not use bleach, so I'm just hoping that my pallets are a-okay for food use. Ah well, I used to eat dirt. And I think I ate a worm once. AND...I'm pretty sure other nasty things in my life. :)
  • It takes approximately 2 to 2 1/2 large bags of soil to fill each pallet. We found it much cheaper to get a load of dirt from a landscaping place in town and fill them that way. 

On that note...go make a pallet garden! 


1 comment:

  1. Beth, we plant pole beans because we don't have a whole lot of vegetable garden space either. Pole beans serve two purposes: space saving and also back-breaking saving (no bending over to pick the beans!). You've already planted bush beans, haven't you? Hope your little garden grows well and gives you lots of healthy, home-grown produce!!


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