Let’s start with some dimensions, shall we? We are making 8 window boxes that will be secured onto 4 2×4 boards, serving as a frame. Six of our boxes will be 2×7’s and then the bottom two boxes will be 2×12’s so that we can plant more root vegetables into them.
Each box is 3 feet long, which is also how far apart the 2×4’s will be for the frame. Each box has two 2×7 sides with a bottom that is a 3 foot long 2×10 plank.
So first things first, Zach had all of the wood cut for us for this work day (because he is an angel). The first thing we did was construct our boxes. Now this sounds like a quick and easy tasks but it actually takes quite a while. We wanted to have all of our boxes built so that we could go ahead and stain them and the frame before we started mounting the boxes. So we spent this first work day screwing the boxes together.
Still to do: we need to cut our 45 degree-angle supports (that will be situated underneath the boxes and secured to the frame so that the boxes will not be too heavy for the frame), secure the 2×4’s to the fence to create our frame, mount the boxes to the frame
This project seems like it doesn’t have that many steps, which is true, but each step takes a while to do so definitely make sure you account for that! I think it would be difficult to built this entire structure in one day so be sure to plan accordingly!
Cut your PVC pipes in half- this sounds like a difficult task if, like me, you do not have (and are afraid to use) a hand saw. But let me tell you a little secret- the Tool Rental in Home Depot is your new favorite place. If you take your PVC pipes in there and ask them to cut them in half, they will first make a whole to-do about how that is so difficult, then they will huddle up in a very manly way and make a game plan as to how this will happen. After this they will put on their goggles and make it happen. All of this is also FREE! So if you are worried about this- Tool Rental is my advice to you.
Drill drainage holes into your halved PVC pipe. Make sure that you have several holes but be sure to at least have holes on either side of your PVC pipe as well as in the very middle- this is where you will put your steel cables to hang your garden. It is best for these three holes to be the same size as your steel cables so that there is minimal wiggle room so that they will be more stable.
Once you have your holes drilled- you can string your pipes onto your cables but make sure you secure the pipes with wing nuts on either wide of the pipe. The wing nuts will make it so that the pipe does not bow out or become unstable when it is filled with soil.
In order to hang your Gutter Garden you can do two things- you can round the ends of your cable into a hook with a hammer (this takes quite a bit of effort) or you can make another visit to Tool Rental! I vote Tool Rental, let’s be real. If you take it to them it will take them seconds to make a hook where if you do it yourself, not that I’m underestimating you, it will take you much longer. You can now hang your Gutter Garden off of the top of a fence or through a hook secured in the ceiling.
Remember our halved pipe caps? Grab them and come PVC cement. You should go ahead and put the caps onto your pipes so that you can get planting ASAP and the soil won’t just spill out the ends.
Now all you need to do is fill your pipes with soil and get planting!
Below is a picture of our Gutter Garden in progress- this is before we hung and secured our pipes with the wing nuts so you can see the bowing.
Good luck with your Gutter Garden and be sure to contact us if you have any questions as you progress!
As always – Best Rhubarbs,