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Pallet Gardening for Small Spaces

Updated on March 20, 2013
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I grew up in a small community in Northwest Arkansas. My life is a busy balance of family and friends, work and play, good times and bad.

I saw a version of a pallet garden/flower bed on Pinterest and thought I would try my own version of the pallet garden. Living in an apartment, I am not able to plant a real garden or flower bed outside so a movable garden was the best option available.

I started with some broken pallets that I got for free from the company my boyfriend works for. (Check with some local companies about broken pallets – you can usually find a place that is willing to give you the broken pallets for no cost.)

I then went to the local discount retail store (Walmart) and bought the cheap gardening fabric that is used to keep weeds out of flower beds and gardens. I also purchased a staple gun and basic hammer but some people will already own these. The other tool you will need is scissors to cut the fabric.

Some blogs/articles on pallet gardening call for a saw to cut the boards, but I decided to improvise. I used the hammer to fix the broken or loose boards on each pallet. I left the boards in their original places on the pallets to make the project easier.

Next step is to cut the fabric in sections long enough to double the fabric used to create a basket-type between the boards of the pallet. Staple the fabric in place and continue for each section of the pallet. Make sure the fabric covers from board to board so your dirt does not fall out of the gaps.

Next step is to fill the fabric “baskets” with dirt. I recommend potting soil – such as Miracle-Gro potting soil – rather than regular topsoil for the extra nutrients since the plants will have such small area to grow in. There are several types of Miracle-Gro soils available so pick one based on if you are planting vegetables, flowers, or both.

Now add plants of your liking. Be sure to pick plants that can live with the amount of sun light your space will get. I have a small area next to the building where I was able to place my pallet garden. Some apartments have a small balcony area where a pallet garden could be placed.

For apartment pallet gardens that have to be grown inside, use thick plastic instead of gardening fabric. Be careful about not over watering or place in an area that will not be damaged by any water leakage. If possible, place the pallet garden by a window for sunlight. Artificial grow light bulbs can be purchased to help the plants grow better inside. The pallet garden does not take up much space when leaned against a wall.

The Completed Project:

By doing the project this way, I was able to have one pallet leaning against the wall with 8 fabric “baskets” and one pallet lying down with 2 large gardening spots. I finished my garden by planting chocolate mint, orange mint, apple mint, and sweet mint in the top row. The second and third row have flowers (don’t remember what kinds) and some English ivy. The bottom row of the wall pallet contains squash and cucumbers. The ground pallet contains green, yellow, and red bell pepper plants, watermelon, and cantaloupe plants. Planting the squash, cucumber, watermelon, and cantaloupe plants on the lower levels of the garden allows the vine-type plants room to grow outside of the pallets.

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    • sadie423 profile image

      sadie423 

      6 years ago from North Carolina

      Very cute garden! We use a lot of pallets around here and plan on using them as trellises in the garden

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 

      6 years ago from the short journey

      Now this is a positive use for pallets! Small space gardening requires some creativity and you've got a great example of that here. Thanks!

    • Faceless39 profile image

      Kate P 

      6 years ago from The North Woods, USA

      That's a fantastic idea, and what a gorgeous end result. Love the description and images! Voted up, useful, awesome, beautiful, and interesting..

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