I’ve seen herbs grown in a variety of recycled containers – cups, jugs, bottles, cans, jars. So when I noticed my vintage letter holder just gathering dust, I decided to put it to good use. I’ve wanted to grow some herbs near my kitchen window for some time because it gets great light. Since the window sill is too narrow, I knew that my only options were going to be something that would hang, or build a shelf across the window. This vintage letter holder turned out to be the perfect solution as a recycled herb planter.
I thought the kitchen window was perfect for growing herbs. The photo on the left is right after I planted them. The photo on the right is a week later. Definitely growth going on, especially the mint. I don’t know why it feels so good to see that plants have grown, but it definitely does.
This was a quick and easy project. First order of business was to get some drainage holes in each of the slots. I had to use an extension on our drill to reach down into the pockets. Here’s a view down one of the letter slots.
Next I cut pieces of cheap landscape fabric to make soil pockets. I say ‘cheap’ because I use very thin and breathable landscape fabric. I want to make sure that any excess water can drain through the fabric, so the roots won’t rot.
A little math comes into figuring out the size of fabric to cut. I’ll step you through it.
- The length from top to bottom is the combined length of the back of the slot, bottom, and front.
- The center of the piece is the width of the slot, plus ¼ inch allowed for two 1/8 inch seams.
- To get the top and bottom widths I used the following formula: [(2 x width across) + (2 x width front to back)] / 2. Then add ¼ inch to allow for two 1/8 inch seams.
I admit that it took me awhile to figure that out. I messed up the first one and had to start over. Once I got the first pocket cut out correctly, I just used it as a template to cut the next two. Then I folded it in the middle, pinned the sides, and sewed 1/8 inch seams.
The rest was easy. I put the plants into the pocket, added some soil, and slipped them into place in each of the slots. Parsley is in the top slot, basil in the next one, and mint is last.
I can’t wait to see how they’ll look in my recycled herb planter a couple of weeks from now.
I hope this post was inspiring for you. Do you have herbs growing in your kitchen?