Raised Vegetable Planter

DIY Raised Vegetable Planter

Raised vegetable planters are a great way to grow vegetables. Even better if you can make your own!

Raised planters keep everything growing where it is meant to be, are easy to maintain and slow the slugs down. A few years ago my husband made some for our kitchen garden. I asked myself whether it was cost effective to grow veg (read more here and here).

It wasn’t particularly cost effective the way we did it, but it was cheaper than buying a pre-made raised bed. Prices vary, but I saw one in my local garden centre for around £70. Whereas the wood for the two beds my husband made cost £60. Raised beds might be a good investment if you get years of veg growing out of them.

Octopus energy

However, I now know there is no need to buy a raised bed frame. You can get them for free!

I found a bath on Freecycle and convinced my husband that we could use it as a raised veg bed. We want to maximize the space we have and grow as much veg as possible. So although we already have some raised beds, we wanted more! He went and picked it up, put it in the back of the car and brought it home. I was a bit unsure about whether the drainage in the bath was good enough with just a plug hole. My husband decided to drill some holes in the bottom of the bath to help with that. We also raised it off the ground on a couple of bricks to allow the water to drain off. The bath wasn’t particularly attractive in itself. I did think about decorating it a bit but thinking was as far as I got!

raised vegetable planter

Now that we have veg growing in it though, I don’t think it needs decorating! 

raised vegetable planter

We have cucumbers! Is it just me or is this one looking rather rude 🙂

raised vegetable planter

Courgettes are on their way – not quite big enough to pick yet. The picture makes them look bigger than they are.

raised vegetable planter

We also have some tiny squashes coming through – we think they are butternut squashes. The bath is planted full of cucumber, squash and courgette plants. So we aren’t quite sure what they are all going to turn out like yet!

bath tub planter

Our next project  

I also convinced my husband to pick up a divan bed being given away on Facebook. We were going to rent our spare room to two students at a time, but actually the bed wasn’t great. The mattress was rubbish, and it stank of smoke.

We later changed our minds about having two students at once. We have just stuck with having one student which has worked well for us so far. Understandably my husband wasn’t very impressed with me. He had told me it smelt of smoke when he went to pick it and gave me a chance to say no thanks. Plus he had to pick it up from a flat which was up a few flights of stairs. I felt bad about not taking it once we had said we would. I wasn’t there and couldn’t judge quite how bad it was.

When it came home I realised the error of my ways. It was relegated it to the garage after I admitted that actually I didn’t want it. Lesson learned though – only take stuff from smoke free homes!   The next plan was to chop it in half and take it to the dump. When the fabric came off, it looked like this:

raised bed planter

By adding a few planks of wood around the edges and some waterproof lining we have ourselves another veg bed! Clearly I had that plan in mind the whole time and knew exactly what I was doing (or not 🙂 ) Warning; Be careful when using upcycled containers for growing fruit, veg and herbs. Some wood is treated with harsh chemicals which may not be food safe.

A while ago my husband made a herb planter out of old pallets. However, we hadn’t lined it and I was worried about what it might have been treated with. In the end we got rid of it – read more here.

How is your garden growing? Has anyone made a raised bed out of a bath? Or an old divan bed or done any other upcycling in the garden? I’d love to hear about your projects!