House & Home

Build a Potting Bench This Spring

Posted February 20, 2013 5:35 p.m. EST

We are all itching for spring here at Networx HQ. We are gearing up for gardening and outdoor living projects, and we can't wait to see yours. If you have an amazing gardening or home improvement project that you'd like to write about and see published, please send it to: editor at networx dot com. You might just get to see your name "in print"!

Potting benches are an amazing convenience for gardeners. No more squatting or kneeling on the ground while potting plants; they provide a place to keep garden tools organized but handy. Potting benches can be built, of course, from new lumber. However, they are an excellent project of you have wood to upcycle. A funky, rambling, country look only adds to the charm of a potting bench.

Pallets make excellent potting benches. There are so many projects that can be built from shipping pallets, from outdoor sofas to bed frames. Pallets lend themselves well to rustic outdoor furniture like potting benches. So what if the finish is less than perfect? It's going to get covered in potting soil, anyway! Besides, the rough finish of a shipping pallet potting bench just adds character to your outdoor living space. You can paint a shipping pallet potting bench bright, fun colors, or go as basic as leaving it unfinished. The number of pallets you'll need to build a potting bench depends on your design. One thing is for sure: You'll need some power tools to do this project, especially a power saw and a power drill. I got this idea from a DIY Jacksonville carpenter. Click on the link at the beginning of this paragraph to learn more about how she made her lovely potting bench.

Now, an old sink makes a dynamite tabletop for a potting bench. Have you picked up a big old farmhouse sink at a salvage sale? Maybe you have an old metal two basin sink that you removed in the course of a renovation. Any old sink will do in this project, but bigger is better. You can build a platform to hold up the sink, or you can drop it into a hole cut in a tabletop. If you're ambitious, you could have a plumber come and hook up the sink to your water supply so that you have water at the ready for easy watering and clean up. Maybe that sink could double as a sink for an outdoor kitchen! Keep that barbecue grill nearby!

You could certainly upcycle an old door into the tabletop of a potting bench. Old doors give you plenty of room to work. For a very rudimentary potting bench, balance an old door on two sawhorses.

However you build your DIY pallet potting bench, be sure to build plenty of storage space into your design. A long shelf underneath the bench is an excellent place to store gardening tools, potting soil, and buckets. Imagine how handy it would be to have peg board built in to your potting bench, or hooks to hang garden tools from. Envision your perfect garden hub, and design it. Spring is coming, and it's a super time to start showing your garden and outdoor living space some love.

Chaya Kurtz writes for

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