Herb planters and markers

Some very cool vertical gardening projects that will hopefully protect my herbs from all the little critters that usually munch on them . . . these were all inspired by Pinterest and can be found on my boards. For the herb jars, I bought quart-size jars and pipe clamps at Wilco, and found an old barnwood board. I used a drill to put a small hole in the slotted section of the pipe clamp, and then screwed the pipe clamp to the board. Next, I screwed the board to the siding on our deck. I put a thin layer of gravel in the bottom of each jar (since they don’t have holes to drain excess water out) and filled them with potting soil, then planted the herbs, slipped the jars into the pipe clamps, and tightened the clamps with an electric screwdriver. We’ll see how they do in the location I’ve selected – it’s not full sun, but lots of good indirect afternoon sunlight. I’ll need to be careful with the watering, because they’ll dry out quickly, but could also easily be overwatered because of the lack of drainage holes.  They’re located on the deck right off of my kitchen – perfect for cutting herbs that I need when making dinner each evening. 

 Next, I dug up my herb beds in the veggie garden – tired of trying to keep the slugs, mice, ground squirrels, and rabbits away from them – and built a vertical garden against one wall of the pool shed.  I collected large metal cans from a local restaurant, and drilled small drain holes in the bottom.  Then I cut a piece of 1” x 2” lumber to the right length and painted it to match the shed.  Next, I drilled a hole in the side of the can and a corresponding hole in the lumber strip.  I ran a bolt through the lumber into the can, and secured it inside the can with a locking bolt and a nut.  Finally, I mounted the entire strip of lumber, with all the cans attached, to the side of the shed with screws on the end and in the middle.

Here’s what it looks like several months later, after the herbs have had time to grow:

herb vertical planters - coffee cans

vertical herb planters in coffee cans - close-up

Finally, I made plant tags out of polymer clay – detailed instructions can be found here.  It wasn’t as easy as it looked, especially to get the letters stamped in without an impression of the stamp block, as well, but I like how they came out well enough.

polymer garden markers 1


polymer garden markers 2

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3 comments on “Herb planters and markers

  1. Having fun browsing your site….I have 3 daughters as well, love to knit and garden. Living in Southern California and you are an inspiration! – Kristen

  2. How’d the mason jar planters work out? Did they do ok with just gravel at the bottom, or did they get waterlogged?

    I think I’ll try the idea with the cans because I can drill a hole at the bottom. But the jars are so pretty…

    Great ideas, thanks!!

    • They actually worked pretty well – not for anything permanent, but for herbs as annuals, I found that the herbs made it through the growing season in good shape. However, as you note, I had to be REALLY careful with watering – the first time, I did waterlog a few of them and had to re-plant. You have to water every day, but only a very little 🙂

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