Friday, May 18, 2012

Strawberry Fields Forever

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"Damn you Pinterest *shakes fist at computer screen*

Just when I thought I had gotten over you, you had to come sneaking back into my life. Well, I am through with you. You hear me? Through! All you do is set me up so you can knock me down.

I'm sorry baby, I didn't mean it. I love you, really. Don't be mad. I'll keep crafting."

This was me a week ago. Something has happened since then that has solidified my relationship with Pinterest and made us stronger than ever.

I made something that actually turned out good!

Did it just get cold in here?

Seriously people. This is a major accomplishment. I barely even hurt myself in the process.

I have been wanting to grow my own strawberries for a while now, CeeCee eats her own body weight in them weekly. Really I would love to grow ALL of her food since most of her issues seem to stem from food sensitivities but I have been hampered by a lack of space and lack of skill.

Enter Pinterest.

I have been in love with the idea of repurposing pallets for a while now. They are so versatile it's ridiculous. I found this idea for a pallet garden on Pinterest. I liked it but flowers aren't really my thing. Then inspiration smacked me upside my head.

I could grow strawberries!

I could grow lots of strawberries!!

I could become a strawberry farmer!!!

After a reality check, I reined myself in and went to work gathering supplies. My landlord gave me a pallet, My mom gave me a bunch of ever bearing strawberries and I hit up my local Canadian Tire Garden Center for the rest.

Supplies (minus plants, they came later)

You will need:

  •  One pallet (preferably not too banged up but it doesn't have to be perfect)
  • 12 bags of topsoil (or a pile of dirt from your yard, no judgement here)
  • 28 strawberry plants ( I like ever bearing, they fruit all summer)
  • 3 meters of landscape fabric (you WILL have leftovers)
  • Sandpaper (doesn't have to be fancy, coarse grit will do)
  • Roofing nails and a hammer
  • Scissors

Step One - Prepping your pallet

Do yourself a favor, wear gloves. 
The first thing you want to do is hammer in any nails that have worked their way loose or are sticking out at funny angles. Once everything is nice and tight take your sandpaper and give the front slats a light sanding, paying attention to the edges of each slat. Don't knock yourself out trying to make it perfect, it isn't meant to be. All we are going for with this step is preventing the need for either a tetanus shot or a pair of tweezers. Rusty nails and splinters tend to take the fun out of gardening.

Step Two - Attach landscape fabric

Note the use of a solar light, lol

Fold the fabric in half so that you have a double thickness. Carefully arrange it over the back of your pallet so that the back, two sides and bottom are well covered. Cut to fit, carefully. If in doubt cut bigger than you think you need and trim off the excess. Landscape fabric is cheap like borscht so don't feel too bad about wasting a few inches. 


Like a big ol' wooden envelope

I used roofing nails to attach the fabric at the pallets thickest points, then I went around and sealed the edges. Be careful with the edges because there isn't a lot of wood there and you don't want to drive a nail through the front of your pallet. I like roofing nails because they have a wide head on them and I didn't want to worry about the fabric pulling free. You could probably use a staple gun if you wanted. Since I am not allowed to use dangerous power tools (for the greater good) I went the old fashioned route. I only smacked my thumb with a hammer once (ok, twice) . 


Step Three - Fill it up:)

The top eight are sad pandas:(
Now that I had my garden box it was time to fill it. Word to the wise, put it exactly where you want it before you fill it because these suckers are HEAVY. Once I had it leaning in its happy place I just cut the tops off the bags and dumped them in from the top. I stuck two strawberry plants in each opening, shoved a couple of solar lights in the top (we really do have ENTIRELY too many solar lights laying around, I think they're breeding) gave it a good watering and that was that. Sadly I don't think some of the top eight are going to make it (transplants from momma's garden) but the rest are doing just fine.

Once you have watered a couple of times the dirt will stay in better.

Well there you have it people, proof that a complete and utter klutz CAN complete a Pinterest project without bloodshed (well, without MUCH bloodshed) and end up with a beautiful and functional garden feature in the process. Soon I will get to reap the rewards:)

First fruit
A happy baby with a happy tummy.

Photo Credit, from top:
Some creepy website
All the rest, me and Instagram Pin It


hairsteph said...

Wow good job!!! I know where I'm going for some fresh strawberries!! :)

MamaZinga said...

Lol, back off of my berries woman:)

Unknown said...

You go girl! Looks like you will have some amazing strawberries soon!

Unknown said...

Wow! Good job girlie! Looks like you will have lots of yummy strawberries soon!