I’ve been busy trying to get my spring garden in on days that haven’t been crazy windy… nothing like trying to plant seeds while chasing wind-blown seed packets down the orchard!
Last week I while picking up plants at our local garden supply I spotted this lovely variegated thyme plant. I already had started some thyme seeds in a container, but it was so pretty I couldn’t resist and picked it up. My plan was to plant it in the same container I along with the started seeds- I figured it would all grow together and look nice to boot.
Fast forward past a few windy days and I’m busting butt on a calm day to get everything in the ground. I start to plant the thyme and catch a quick look at the label… it’s not regular ol’ thyme, it’s lemon thyme. Not that I have a problem with lemon thyme, but I just don’t need lemon thyme (well, to be honest, I didn’t need more thyme of any kind in the first place… guess this is Karma for buying something I really didn’t need!) and I don’t know what will happen with the flavor if they mix together. But, I still didn’t want to bring it back… I bought it, and it’s just so darn pretty with its tiny little variegated leaves, and it smells divine… definitely be good stuff to add to Asian dishes. (See how I justify things? There is just no hope).
Okay, so I’m going to keep the darn thing, but I’m out of plant containers. And there’s no way I’m going to go buy a container I don’t need for a plant I don’t need (maybe there is hope! 🙂 ). So my only option was to come up with something with what I have on hand. I start looking around, and I spy the empty old ceramic crock that my grandpa used to cure olives back in the day. It’s heavily cracked, so there’s no way I’m going to chance drilling holes, but it would sure be neat to use for this… If only there was a way to use it and still get soil drainage… then my eyes wander to all the old plastic hanging baskets I’ve saved from hanging annuals I’ve bought in years past. I figured I’d use them to start seeds in or something, since once they’ve been hanging out for a season, our 100+ degree summers really break down the plastic and I’ve lost plants to the hangers breaking when I’ve tried to reuse them again. But maybe if I didn’t use the hanging part…
Now to be totally fair, I’m sure I’ve seen this done in something else somewhere before stacking terra-cotta pots the same way I’m stacking the plastic ones. But it’s sure cool to get some more use out of something I’d probably just end up throwing away eventually.
Here’s what you’ll need for a ceramic crock garden container:
- Ceramic crock or similar container
- 2 plastic baskets or pots that are a bit smaller in diameter than the container in #1
- Sharp cutting shears
- Plant(s) of your choice
- Potting soil (not pictured)
Cut off the top rim of one of the plastic baskets. Doing so in front of lavender doesn’t help the process, but smells very nice. 🙂
Measure and cut second plastic basket to use as a base so when they sit inside the crock they will come up to just below the rim.
Put the shorter of the plastic baskets upside down in the bottom of the crock. This will act as a base for the other plastic basket and allow for soil drainage.
Put the taller of the plastic baskets on top. Ideally, it will not fit snug in the crock to allow evaporation of water from the soil drainage.
Add potting soil and plant(s).
Ta-da! Since this an idea I can reuse in the future and share with others that saves money and spares our landfills, maybe there was a higher purpose in my buying that lemon thyme.
Or maybe I’m just justifying things again.
Oh well. I’ve got a cute “new” container in my garden. Life is good. 🙂
Janice Carr-Jolkowski says
I love this idea , that you have come up with! I will work on this myself. I just love old white crockery.
Thanks so much Janice!
Jackie Vedder says
Sharon L Lusby says
So excited to try this. I found two old crocks and they will look amazing. I was trying to figure out how to plant in them. Your ideas are perfect. Thanks for sharing.
Will this distory my crock. It’s belongs to my daughter. And she likes old stuff. But let bower it.
I’m happy this project inspired you Nancy!
Will the elements destroy the crock? I have 2-3 I’d love to use outside but I’ve been worried about them falling apart….