Back in April we decided to stay in our beautiful albiet overpriced and cold Berkeley apartment. Immediately I launched into episodes of home projects, one of which was a garden. About a week later, our stupid landlord summoned us with a lease extension. As promised the base rent did not increase, however all the extra fees took a spike. Needless to say, that day we visited multiple open houses.
The week inbetween staying and leaving resulted in a garden. I really like the idea of growing food, it gives both an appreciation and accountability to the food we eat. Living in apartments can be very limiting in terms of the ability to garden, grill, build and create. Since our previous apartment had a deck, I wanted to use a square foot garden method to grow a little garden. In retrospect, my economical idea of using dresser drawers was awesome because when we finally did find a new home, I was able to transport this garden easily.
For people unfamiliar with the square food garden method, essentially every square food has a crop dedicated to that slot. The idea is that you plant the crops strategically so the tall growing crops that need a lot of sunlight will provide the shade for the crops that need protected.
This project cost under 100 dollars, including plants, and here is how I did it:
1) Go to a used furniture store, such as Urban Ore. I purchased dresser drawers, as deep as possible (you want at least six inches). I bought four drawers for $5.00 each.
2) Once you have the drawers, measure them and plan your garden. The square foot garden website has helpful information about how many seeds per square food you will need to plan. I grew: two types of lettuce, cucumbers, tomato plant, two pepper plans, strawberries and walla walla onions.
2) Go to Home Depot and purchase :
- four bricks per drawer (bricks are under 50 cents each).
- Plastic drip pans found in the gardening section 3-4 dollars a piece (This is only necessary if you are going to be gardening on a wooden deck)
- Soil (I used 2 bags per drawer)
- and any seeds/plants desired
Lining up the drawers on bricks
3) Using an electric drill, drill multiple holes in the drawers to allow for draining. Arrange the brinks to elevate the drawers off the ground and place the drip pan beween the bricks. When ready, place the drawer on top of the bricks and fill with soil.
The garden, three months later, I really need to figure out how to grow lettuce, it is out of control
So far, I am still waiting to dine from my garden, however my cat really enjoys eating the onions and strawberry plants.
Sawyer, the weed wacker