Wood Garden Box
Gwyn Ridenhour builds a delightful garden box with colorful veggie stakes and playful characters.
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Gwyn Ridenhour paints all kinds of playful characters, like the ones seen on her handmade wood garden box and garden markers.
Materials and Tools:
2' x 12' x 12' piece of untreated lumber
12 wood screws
acrylic paint, various colors
3' x 3' piece of corrugated cardboard
9 cubic feet of organic topsoil and compost mix
2 large paintbrushes and several small paintbrushes
permanent black pen
paint thinner (for cleanup)
1/4" piece of plywood
several wooden garden stakes
small screws or nails
screwdriver and/or tack hammer
1. Using a circular saw, cut the 2' x 12' x 12' piece of untreated lumber into four equal lengths of three feet.
2. Prime only one side of each length with a water-based primer, being sure to seal the top and side edges. Clean the primer brush with water.
3. Once the primer dries, use a pencil to sketch the desired design on each 3-foot piece of lumber.
- To create the image of the children peeking over the flowers, draw a line lengthwise down the center of the board.
- Just above this line, draw three half-circles equally spaced along the board.
- Embellish with hair, hats and other desired features.
- Add the flowers down the center line.
- Erase any lines not needed.
4. Paint the design with acrylic paints and small paintbrushes. Depending on the quality of the paints, cover with up to three coats to get solid coverage. Paint the top and side edges.
6. Make sure everything is completely dry.
- Using a large paintbrush, apply three coats of polyurethane on each board, letting each coat dry before applying the next.
- Only coat the painted areas and leave the side of the box that will be in contact with the soil untouched.
- This will ensure that the soil (and future plants) will remain uncontaminated by any harsh chemicals.
- Use mineral spirits or paint thinner to clean the brush, as polyurethane is oil-based.
8. Move the box to the garden and lay the 3' x 3' piece of corrugated cardboard in the bottom of the frame. This will kill any grass and/or weeds and encourage earthworms too!
9. Fill the wood garden box (frame) with nine cubic feet of a good mixture of organic topsoil, manure and/or compost.
10. Sketch the veggie marker designs on the 1/4-inch piece of plywood with a pencil. Make the drawings about 8" to 10" tall for easy visibility in the garden.
11. Once the sketches are completed, use a jigsaw to cut out the images.
12. Sand the edges of each cutout (veggie design) using a fine rasp.
13. Paint both sides of the cutouts using acrylic paints. Priming is optional, but not necessary.
14. Once the design is painted, use a permanent black pen to outline the detailed features and set aside.
15. Paint the wooden garden stakes any shade of green. For multiple markers, consider using different shades of green for each stake. Set aside and wait until everything dries.
16. Attach the garden marker cutouts to the top of the stakes using wood glue and two small screws or nails. Protect the cutout during this step by laying it on an old towel.
17. Once the glue has had time to dry, prop the markers securely using bricks or wood. Seal the garden markers with two coats of polyurethane (front and back), being sure to let each coat dry in between. There is no need to seal the stakes.
18. Sink each marker 6" to 8" in the ground to ensure they don't topple over.
Web site: www.gwynandbearit.com
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