Tiered Lettuce Garden + Link Party

May 8th, 2012

So the gardening bug hit me pretty hard in the last week, I’ve been pruning perennials and planting annuals and tomatoes too.  I also planted something I’ve never planted before and that’s two varieties of lettuce.  I don’t know why I’ve never planted lettuce before, perhaps its because I usually grab greens in the summer at the farmer’s market or grocery store but this year I began an experiment to see if I could successfully manage to grow a few heads of lettuce to make my own salad.

lettuce and herb garden

 

I reused one of my old half barrels (we have a bunch) that I typically grow tomatoes in but dedicated it to lettuce and herbs this year.  My local nursery sells them in six packs, so I bought the lettuce there instead of growing it from seed.  I mixed in some thyme and basil too, because I can’t get enough of those for in summertime, hello caprese and pesto and fresh herbs on grilled chicken!

As for the planter, I found a smaller redwood barrel at Home Depot but its reddish tones didn’t work for me, so I whitewashed it instead. The birdhouse is just for whimsy, I like tiers in threes so I thought it was a cute addition.  I weathered the roof using this vinegar trick then whitewashed the birdhouse just like the middle half barrel.  (Basic whitewashing technique explained here.)

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Mosaic Tile Window Box Planter

May 7th, 2012

Hey there, hope you had a great weekend!  We did some organizing and gardening and had a big birthday party for both the kids at the local park – it was a lot of fun and also relaxing too!  I can feel summer coming with the warmer weather and everything in bloom, and we’re loving spending more time outdoors in the sunshine, aren’t you?

Last week I mentioned I came up with a few creative ideas for container gardening for a Home Depot workshop, the first was the wood shim planter, the second was this mosaic tile window planter box seen below.  I’ve got a third project to share with you later this month, but before I do, here’s an example of how you can use mosaic tile to dress up an ordinary redwood planter.

mosaic tile window box planter before and after

Any small scale mosaic tile you find will do and there are so many available to choose from.  This project can be done without the use of a tile cutting saw if you stick to the mesh grid square mosaics like the one seen above instead of an offset or brick pattern tile.  I chose white because the planter was destined to be part of a raffle at the Home Depot presentation and because basic white would be at home in any backyard.

If you’ve never tiled anything before, this is a good place to start!  It’s a small enough project for you to get your feet wet with a tiling, and you’ll be so excited you did it!   To recreate your own mosaic tile planter, here are the basic supplies: wood planter box, thin set mortar, mosaic tile of choice, grout, stain or outdoor latex paint (optional), polyurethane (if staining), sponge brush, large sponge, grout float or spackle/putty knife, and painter’s tape.

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