Blog post

My Bookshelf Garden

May 9, 2020

This old bookshelf had been sitting in our backyard for who knows how long. We kept meaning to get rid of it but hated to the thought of just throwing it out, yet we had nowhere to put it in our house. I had also been wanting to build a raised garden for awhile now but never got around to it, then I realized I could kill two birds with one stone and put the bookshelf to good use!

Here you can see where the bookshelf sat unused for months:

We started by drilling holes in the back of the shelf to make sure the plants had proper drainage. Then we layered pine needles at the very bottom of each compartment for a little extra drainage.

We tried to place to shelf in a good spot that would get plenty of sun, but I decided that in case we ever wanted to move it, we could place it on a couple furniture movers (with wheels) that I bought at Wal-Mart. It ended up being a good idea because we were able to move it later so it could be more in the sun.

One good thing about a bookshelf garden is that you don’t have to buy all the soil and plant everything all at once – you can space it out! We used a combination of gardening and potting soil, mixed with a layer of topsoil.

Then we planted some vegetables: bell peppers, squash, and tomatoes, along with some flowers: lavender and periwinkle. Not sure how well the squash will do because it tends to spread out, but the shelves are actually pretty deep so we’ll just have to wait and see. So far, the bell peppers are thriving the most.

I added a finishing touch by making garden stakes – I bought some small rectangle wooden pieces at Michael’s, painted them, then hot glued them to bamboo skewers. They turned out better than I thought they would, now we just have to see if they’ll hold up to this west Texas wind.

You can watch the whole process here!

Such a fun project – now let’s just hope nothing dies!

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