Our Little Garden

I grew up in a house that constantly changed its interiors. My mother, whose forte is country style, made it her weekly habit to change something at home – reupholster our sofa, repaint our walls, change the wallpaper, construct new cabinets, mix and match the throw pillows…the list goes on. If she were to get paid a lot for every interior magazine she bought, she’d have millions by now! Long before the era of Pinterest, my mother’s house was already very pinteresting! We always felt like we lived at Ikea or Pottery Barn. No matter how small the space, she didn’t fail in making it beautiful and functional. She always jokes that since she can’t afford to buy a new house, she’ll just change the look of our house to feel like we have a new house! Not a bad way of seeing things, actually!

Anyway, it didn’t take long for my mother’s love for the interiors to rub off on me. When I was 9, I saw a magazine with a beautiful room and told her I wanted to redecorate my room. The rest is history – with every room I owned, I made sure to have a theme. I couldn’t stand a bare room. I always felt the need to decorate. 2 houses, 1 condo and 5 rooms later, I have A LOT of accumulated decorations and an ever growing love for interior design.

BUT if there’s one passion my mom has that did not rub off on me, it’s gardening. Maybe it’s because in my parents’ house, I only owned a room and not the whole house, so I didn’t feel the need to have a green thumb. I know nothing about growing plants; I only know how to eat them. Seriously.

Like they say, however, some things change when you get married. This is one change I am embracing with open arms. I suddenly became into gardening with the help of my husband and our house genius, Daday. We’ve been working hard to grow our own food – and as vegetarians, you can only expect how excited we are for the day of “harvest”. So far, we’ve planted eggplants, tomatoes, peppers, string beans, tropical lime, kangkong, chinese cabbage and cherry tomatoes.

On this entry, I will teach you a step-by-step guide of a little herb garden we did over the weekend.

I first saw a photo of recycled softdrink bottles used as plant pots from Pinterest. I found it really cool but didn’t know how to make it exactly. So imagine my delight when we were driving along J.P. Rizal in Mandaluyong and saw a house that did exactly just that! We got a chance to study how the owner did it and days after, we were working on our own little project!

So how did we do it? I will make this guide as clear as I can. Hope it helps you out when you make your own garden!:)

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

Empty Softdrink Bottles
Cutter
Pentel Pen
Latex Paint (if you want to paint the bottles)
Enamel Paint (if you want to paint the bottle caps)
S Hooks
Nylon String
Wire/ Nail
Plants (I think herbs work best with these containers)

STEP 1:

Gather all the softdrink bottles you’ll use. Personally, I prefer to use only one type (same body shape) and color. For our garden, we used 15 bottles because that’s the number of bottles we had in stock. Since we had 2 sizes (1.5 and 2 L), I put the larger ones in the middle of the columns.

STEP 2:

You need to cut the middle part of the bottle (one side only!) to make space for your plant. To make it easier, we drew around the area we wanted to cut (using a pentel pen) then used a cutter to cut through the plastic.

STEP 3:

STEP 3:

Make 2 sets of holes:

a) one on both sides of the cut area (left and right, top and bottom) to make space for the nylon string which you’ll use to hold the bottles together
b) holes on the part of the bottle that wasn’t cut (this should be the bottom middle) to serve as water holes

To do this, we used a soldering iron. A soldering iron is available at hardware stores and it isn’t expensive.

STEP 4:

This isn’t a necessary step if you’re fine with the color (or lack thereof) of your bottles. I chose to go with white paint. The kind we used was latex. Latex will not work on the bottle caps if you want to paint the caps as well. For caps, you should use enamel. My niece and I have a separate project for the caps. Will update you soon!

STEP 5:

Dry the paint! We found S hooks to be the most effective way to dry them. S hooks are available at hardware and home stores.

STEP 6:

Hold the bottles together! We had to measure the gaps in between the columns so they’d all look the same! Anyway, just put in the nylon string in between the nylon string holes (look at Step 3) and make a knot after every bottle to hold it in place.

STEP 6:

Transfer your plants to the containers! We got herbs from Manila Seedling Bank a few days ago, and we got the ones that survive Manila heat (according to the salesperson) the most: Peppermint, Oregano Thyme and Rosemary. We tried planting Cilantro before but it was very hard to keep them alive. Maybe we’ll try again soon!

We also tried planting kangkong seeds in it. Not sure how it will turn out.

Anyway…

STEP 7:

Hang your plant containers! Depending on what you choose to plant, the area has to receive full sun, half sun or indirect sun. We chose herbs (since they don’t grow so tall and don’t need huge spaces) that need direct sunlight so we put it in an area that is directly hit by the afternoon sun. Since our chosen area already had grills on the upper part of the wall, we didn’t need to drill a hole and make space for a large nail. We just turned wires into S hooks then hung our garden columns there. If you don’t have something like our grills, you can drill a hole (depending on your surface, you might not need this), put a large nail and hang the containers there.

So…this project is kind of easy – and quick. You can surely do one, too! I hope this entry helps you! Happy DIY-ing!:)

2 comments on “Our Little Garden”

  1. Ken Barkey Reply

    This bottle recycle trick we applied in our French Institute @ Alliance Francaise…. If was fun working on this and i really had a very good time doing this…. Thank You for letting me remember that wonderful time…

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