Well, it’s been almost 5 weeks since we planted our recycled garden and I’m so excited to show you our progress!!

We’ve tasted fresh basil and lemon thyme at dinner time and harvested 4 delicious strawberries!  Just look at how full the vintage suitcase is now!  (1st photo – day of planting, 2nd and 3rd photo’s taken today)

The broccoli has little heads on it already and the yellow and orange bell peppers are so happy in their new home!  (I do think the sweet peas in the last picture may be getting a bit cramped but they seem very happy and are already about 6 inches tall!)  We can’t wait to see some blossoms on them! (1st photo – day of planting, 2nd and 3rd photo’s taken today)

The cucumbers are starting to make beautiful vines that we’ll soon have to step over.  Our vintage munition boxes are happily seeing sprouts of watermelon, carrots, chives, lettuce, and cauliflower!  (as well as some broccoli plants too) The tomatoes have quite a few blossoms on them and I can’t wait to see the baby fruit appear!  (photo’s taken today)

And the flowers……..oh the colors!!

Just look at the color that’s blossomed over the last few weeks!  Our snapdragon plants (2 of them) are now sporting 5 amazing hues and the sweet lobelia in the red desk organizer has now grown over the edges and looks right at home.  The pansies and viola are doing well except for a few violas the we lost in one of the file cabinet drawers…. (note for anyone in a very hot climate – high temps and metal containers may not be the best choice for delicate flowers!)  The petunia’s in the tall trash can are now overflowing and look right at home there.  We lost our lovely ranunculus about 1 week after I moved the garden into more direct sunlight.  (note to self – these sweet flowers don’t appreciate the hot AZ sun!) But I’ll try again next year.  Our girls’ dwarf sunflower seeds are growing beautifully as you can see in the 2nd photo. (1st photo – day of planting, 2nd and 3rd photo’s taken today)

A few things I’ve learned with this recycled/vintage garden……

  • You CAN NOT miss a day of watering……(or the sweet marigolds in the recycled colander will die)
  • Trying to give the plants their needed 8 hours of sunlight doesn’t account for the 95+ temps in the desert.  A little shade won’t hurt!  Especially for the flowers.
  • Don’t plant fragile flowers in metal containers in the desert sun.  They won’t last very long.
  • Check on your garden daily.  Hugs and kisses help too according to our girls!


Grandpa 'hid' strawberries in the strawberry patch for Easter!

Grandpa ‘hid’ strawberries in the strawberry patch for Easter!

Stay tuned to see what else we have in store for our little patch of farmland!  (ps. it involves ladybugs and natural tomato worm repellant!) Thanks so much for coming by and taking the time to check on the garden with us!  We’d love to hear what your gardens are looking like right now.  Comment below to share with us!

Blessings to you friends and happy gardening,



Welcome to our DIY tutorial for how to make a beautiful and one of a kind ‘recycled garden!’

Here we’ll go through our easy steps of how we created a stunning garden in no time and with minimal expense!

Step 1

Decide what ‘look’ you are going for and find pieces/containers that match your style and plants you’ll be planting. Here we were looking for pieces that worked together, but had an old -time feel to them. (I let my girls pick some of the pieces out so it’s a bit more eclectic than I had envisioned! :) But I love how it turned out! We even found the ‘Reduce, Recycle, Reuse’ sign at a thrift store and added that to the garden!

Check all your local thrift stores and see what treasures jump out at you! Don’t forget to check Craigslist or your local Freecycle page for other local finds. (If you haven’t used Freecycle before I recommend checking it out! I’ve found some amazing ‘junk’ on there and I love being connected with others who also try to recycle things!)

Step 2

If your containers don’t have holes or a way for the water to drain out the bottom, make sure and drill holes in the bottom of the piece so the moisture has a place to go. (Holes about dime or penny size are good.)

We used a drill and dremel to accomplish this as we had a mix of metal and wood containers to drill. My sweet Hubby was so kind to help us with this task!

Step 3

Fill your container with good soil. I used an organic, non GMO soil made locally since we are growing edible yummies in the garden and it makes me so happy knowing we’ll have healthy, ‘good for us’ food in a bit!

Step 4

Plant your seeds or plants in your new beautiful gardens! We cheated this year and bought many of our plants already blooming or started since I was a bit late with this project this year! (Mental note….start in Feb. in the desert as the heat will be on us by late May!) But we did pick out some veggie seeds that will be going into the wooden munition boxes this week so I’ll have pictures of that soon!

Pictured below are some of the flowers that the girls and I chose. The gorgeous footlocker features sweet snapdragons, a geranium, 2 kinds of lavender and my favorite little ranunculus. The tall metal trash can is filled to the brim with a petunia and sweet little viola’s and johnny jump up’s. The vintage suitcase that I fell in love with now holds a strawberry patch on one side and a herb garden on the other! (Can you smell the delicious lemon thyme and pineapple sage from there??) The file cabinets and various recycled pots hold broccoli, yellow and orange peppers, sweet peas, tomatoes, and cucumbers. (Yum!) My youngest just loves the orange marigolds so we mixed those in with the rest of the pansies, violas and johnny jump up’s that we had left. The colander holds 2 adorable marigolds that were so easy and fun to plant. (Note of warning – don’t forget to water this one daily as the water drains so very well!!) One of my favorites was the up-cycled letter holder my Mother in law so sweetly gave me! (Hopefully she won’t mind this use of it!!) We put some ice plants and sweet little lobelia in there and it is just bursting with happiness!

The charm of these types of ‘container’ gardens is that you can make it meet your exact design preferences. If you love rustic designs, you can easily pick out/find older rustic looking containers to plant your garden in. Find old wooden signs and make your own planters from that. How about an old rusty tire rim? (Filled at the bottom of course so your dirt doesn’t escape.) Love the Victorian period?? Find some old teapots or china to use as planters. Or simply go ‘treasure’ hunting and see where your heart leads you!

Our cost so far has been – $60 for the planters. (This would have only been $30 but I found the wooden crates later on and just fell in love with them! The tops of the boxes we took off and they will be used for photo props for Spice Grove Designs!) The plants, seeds and soil cost around $150, but would have only been about $60 if I only had to buy seeds and soil instead of the established plants.

I was so thankful to get to do this with my girls not just to teach them about growing their own food and flowers, but to show them how creative we can be with reusing things!!

Little Gardeners

My amazing helpers!

I hope you enjoyed a walk through our recycled garden and we’d love to see pictures of your gardens! Let us know what you think! How are you recycling things in your garden?

As always, blessings to you friends,and happy gardening!Charlotte

PS. For some more inspiration from someone who is an actual gardener, make sure and check out our last post from our friend Emily at Fleuropean and the amazing difference she is making with her flowers!

Our happy Ranuculus!

Our happy Ranuculus!

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