A repurposed garden doesn’t have to mean an ugly garden! I made all the structures in our garden for a banging grand total of 8 euros (10 dollars) and I think they look pretty nice. The key is to be consistent with your materials and techniques, so that the structures go together somewhat and it doesn’t end up looking like one huge mess. Always keep the big picture in mind to avoid chaos on the detail level. But then that’s true for most things in life.
And now I sound like a promotional speaker on a leadership 2.0 congress.
Anyway, here are my garden projects for your viewing pleasure!
Our pallet garden box. I made this the easiest and laziest way possible, but so far it’s holding up great. I used the wood from two pallets that came with the red bricks, some hardware I had lying around, and a saw the neighbor kindly lent me. I’ll post a tutorial for this somewhere in the near future, as it’s pretty great for people who like maximum effect with minimum effort type of projects.
Total cost: 0 euros.
This bean rack is a little on the low side, but there’s a beautiful rose growing behind it that we didn’t want to obscure from view. I guess I’ll have to weave the beans from side to side, or let them hang down or something. I hope they won’t mind. The stalks are parts of an antique fishing rod I found at the local thrift store. The rope is, well, rope. Pro tip: tie the ropes at regular distances so that it looks like you know your shit.
Total cost: 1 euro.
Making up 7/8 of my total budget, this structure was my most expensive project at a whopping 7 euros. The Tuscany jasmine totally enjoys its posh home, though. I stacked the ends of three cheap garden laths and secured them with a long screw. Then I moved the other ends apart to form the right angles – I made a drawing first:) – and sawed off the ends at the appropriate distances. The construction is secured by wiggling it into the space between the concrete pole and the existing fence, and fastening it to the fencing on the other end. Dirk helped me with tightening the fish thread wires because that would be a completely frustrating job to do by yourself.
Total cost: 7 euros.
The neighbors gave us these bamboo poles a while ago. See how nice they are? And how appropriate it was to make a guerilla gift to thank them? Initially we wanted to put a hedge here to block the trash cans from view, but we both really liked the idea of an edible garden, so we put a Japanese wineberry instead. The front pole goes pretty deeply into the ground to steady the structure. I’m threading the wineberry through to form a kind of natural fence. And then of course we have the rope, which is still, well, rope.
Total cost: 0 euros.
There we have the neighbors again… At first I was apprehensive about asking restaurants and shops for cans, but they’re throwing them away anyway, so most of them will be happy to help you. The guy from the Greek restaurant even dove into his dumpster to retrieve the can for me! So then I was really in love with this can idea and wanted to get more and more and more and more cans. And then Dirk looked really unhappy and I asked him what was wrong and he said ‘no more cans!’.
Hope this gave you some ideas! If you take nothing else away, remember this: garden rope is your friend. Also, good neighbors are worth their weight in gold and you should cherish them if you have them. Oh, and also that thing about looking at the bigger picture. I thought that was pretty deep. You may invite me to your leadership 2.0 congress any time.
Have fun building your own fabulous and nearly free garden, guys!