Winter can be a great time to gather materials and build gardening accessories, start seedlings or just browse through gardening catalogs, imagining the garden to come. It can also be the perfect time to find what you need to build a free potting bench. We’ve done this several times. Try these steps to do the same:
When Remodeling, Consider Saving Old Counter-tops and Cabinets to Build a Potting Bench – But Don’t Ignore Your Climate
When we replaced a bathroom counter, we saved the slightly battered but very functional top to use as as part of a new bench. We decided to simply make a very simple potting bench, a place where we could accomplish basic gardening tasks. We had a laminate counter top and it worked just fine. However, we had to put it in a garage because harsh winters could have ruined the top if it was left outside year round, warping it or even cracking it.
Bottom line: Even if you find free materials, consider your climate and be clear about whether your potting bench can withstand the elements. Some are fine outside, especially in mild climates or in protected areas. Others are best in garden sheds and/or garages – or even in special rooms inside the home.
Use a Cast-Off Dresser, as writer Cyndee Kromminga suggests here to build a potting bench
In her article, writer Cyndee Kromminga, had a brilliant idea for turning an old dresser drawer into a potting bench. She even includes detailed directions for transforming a deep drawer into a very usable potting bench. She knows how to turn roadside discards or orphaned furniture, particularly dressers and drawers, into perfect benches for potting plants. I think this is a brilliant idea!.
Bottom line: don’t overlook cast-off furniture, including functional dressers and deep drawers, when building your potting bench. Some possibly ugly furniture can be found on trash day and turned into very attractive potting benches.
Don’t Overlook Old Workbenches as Possibilities for Gardening Chores
We inherited a very old workbench that was located at the back of a garage. Admittedly beat up, it was still sturdy and had plenty of room. It even had deep drawers. It worked perfectly as a potting bench, especially with all the drawers, formerly used for tools, now used for gardening supplies.
Bottom line: don’t assume that a workbench- or any type of furniture – has to serve only one purpose.
Get the Word Out if You are Looking for Potting Benches or Materials
If you are driving down the street and notice that someone is remodeling a house, complete with dumpster outside, counter top or cabinets in the dumpster, it doesn’t hurt to ask if you can have the materials. However, be sure to ask the age of the counters, cabinets, etc. You don’t want to end up with items so old that they might contain lead paint or give off lead dust. Friends, neighbors and others may be delighted to have you haul off their old chest of drawers, kitchen counter tops and other items.
Bottom line: don’t be shy about letting people know you are looking for potting bench materials.
Follow these steps and you could have your free potting bench, completely built and ready to use come Spring!