Archive for May, 2011

Adventures in Gardening, continued

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

The table has been planted. The kids LOVED helping plant the garden. There has been a lot of interest about my table, and I would love to talk about it more if anyone is interested. In fact I can even build one for you 😉


I will post more when the trellis is built, might be tonight!

Adventures in Gardening, continued

Sunday, May 8th, 2011

Today as part of Dee’s Mother’s Day present the boys and I built the garden table I had been designing. There were few hiccups but the build went rather quickly. This was the first time I did ANY home improvement/building project that did not require numerous trips to the hardware store. I suppose I could say that is because of good planning, but I might chalk it up to a little dumb luck too.

— Lowe’s could not cut the 4”x4” posts I wanted so I needed to visit a friend on the way home from the hardware store to get the posts cut.
— Some of the lumber prices jumped nearly $1 since I priced them out only a week ago.
— My drill battery did not last until I was finished. Hand-tools FTW!
— Only 2 screws were needed per joint ( a pleasant surprise) but now I have about 40 extra screws.

— There is a contractors discount at Lowe’s. No idea why the lady thought I deserved that, but thanks!
— Everything fit!
— Trellis will be easy to build with left over 2”x2”. I will need to pick up one 2”x2” and some mesh.
— Matthew and Joseph were quite helpful and fun to work with. The boys engraved their initials, Dee’s and mine as well as the date into the wood.
— Only ONE trip to Lowe’s!
— SHCSD Horticulture class was selling all the plants I wanted to put in the garden! (Bonus!)

The table is “finished” but I need to pimp it out and plant yet. Since the top soil I bought was VERY damp I am letting it sit for a day or two before I plant. Until then I will work on adding a trellis to the table and I will post plans and pictures when that is complete.

Here is a link to the Pictures of the process and the First plans. I will post the final plans with dimensions and cut diagrams when I get finished.

Adventures in Gardening

Sunday, May 1st, 2011

When Dee and I first lived in Ames, her twin sister and family allowed us to have a garden in their backyard. We then moved to Mason City and the garden returned to “yard”. I loved growing fruits and vegetables in that garden. That little 10’x20′ patch gave a lot of funny stories, including one where Chris ate one of my Habenero Peppers and nearly killed himself. I had peppers, tomatoes, corn, watermelon, beans, peas, cucumbers, you name it. Now I have nothing.

I grew up being dragged to our garden and was tasked with gardening and picking and prepping.. quite frankly I hated it. So now you ask, why am I designing a garden table that I can grow fruits and veggies in? Well, first off, it is MY idea ( or at least Dee and my idea). With vegetables and herbs costing so much money being able to grow my own is very tempting and really quite exciting.

Dee and I have always talked about wanting a garden but since we rent we can’t dig up the back yard. So we just let the idea pass and never acted on it. With our recent trip to Italy Dee and I learned (and experienced) the importance of fresh ingredients in our cooking. Since we both fancy ourselves culinary experimenters we need fresh items for our cooking. HENCE…. the GARDEN!

So, Dee and I started exploring container gardening and I stumbled upon a lady who uses a raised garden bed, but it is not a traditional raised bed that is still on the ground, but instead is elevated. I decided that this is something that I could tackle. I would not consider myself terribly “handy” but I can get by with a few power tools and instructions. Except with this project there are no instructions, so I needed to design them myself. I enjoy drawing and modeling and have sine I was young. I remember designing sneakers, buildings, rockets, and even a kite or two. So I jumped into this project and started doodling (to scale and with a ruler mind you!). I hope to draw up the plans in a CAD program or drafting program later today but I am really partial to pencil and paper when it comes to designing and diagramming projects. I know most of you are surprised by that.

Now, since so many people have asked about this project on Twitter and Facebook I decided to chronicle it on my blog here. I will post pictures and final draft ideas here. I am going to use my Flikr feed for this since I need a refresh on using it.