Four Rain Barrels and a Propagation Box Later...

aezarien(7b)July 20, 2008

...I am worn out but it was well worth the work. We managed to put together four whiskey rain barrels for about the price of purchasing one finished one (about $160 including tools we had to purchase specifically for the project). We used reclaimed wood for the 4X6 propagation box so with screws we ended up with maybe $10 in it. A few heating cables, some sand, and if mother nature would be so kind, some rain and we will be ready for these items to be put to good use! I am waiting for my batteries to charge but sometime tomorrow I'll take a few photos and post them.

I have more room in my garage now and with the small greenhouse and a small propagation box, a means to play in the dirt at least a little. Watch out seasonal affective disorder (heh). I might have you whipped this year.

Yeah, I'm a little excited. I need more hobbies.....

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I'd be very interested in some pics, especially the propagation box. Very neat!

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 10:16PM
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I second that!! I would love to build something like that that I could do some early spring propagation in!! Winter always kicks my butt too!! :-) I always find myself longing for the days I can get outside and play.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2008 at 11:42PM
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I guess so far the box is just a box and not really complete. The frame is built but we still need to:

a. dig out a little underneath
b. put some sand and heating cables in it
c. fill it the rest of the way with sand

We will eventually turn it into a mini hoop house once we have the other supplies. Right now though.. it's just a 4'X6'X9" box. :) I probably should have put the decorative side on the outside but I kind of wanted it to not look like old paneling.

The box was constructed with 3/4" yellow pine. 3 3"X6's on two sides and 3 3"X4's on the other two sides. The 9"X2"X2"s in the corners are corner braces and the wood screws into those at the corners. We used a handful of drywall screws to secure them and it is amazingly sturdy. You could use two inch thick material for something a little sturdier but it won't be as easy to move if you decide you want it somewhere else.

Here is one of the rain barrels we made. It is still kind of leaky at the bottom but it only lost about an inch yesterday. Unlike the others it hasn't had water in it long so it hasn't had a chance to swell as much. As long as it will hold water those small leaks will eventually seal up on their own. The others are sealed now.

Here is the entire group. As you can see they have already become plant stands. They are not hooked to each other. The washer hose can't handle that type of overflow. If it is laying free on the ground it can keep up pretty well however. I need to fix the rings on that one. It's amazing what you miss sometimes. In my defense.. it was dark when we finished.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 9:28AM
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These are so neat, very decorative. I wish I had something better than my 32 gallon trash can, BUT HEY, it works!
I LOVE that planter the the MIL tongue is is SOOO cute!!! I want one too!
You have some very nice plants too....

Thanks for sharing,
:) Fran

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 2:15PM
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Thank you for the lovely compliments. I was actually going to buy a few trash cans myself but my husband tracked those barrels down from an area salvage store and they only cost $20. That was a hard deal to pass up even though it was sort of a gamble being as they may not have sealed up as nicely.

That wooden man actually isn't a planter. It is in front of the planter but it really does look like they are planted in there doesn't it? They are planted in an old 70's glass pitcher which I have agonized over breaking so I can get the plant out. The pitcher no longer has soil in it that plant is so root bound. The wooden man is actually a solar powered lantern. His eyes light up at night. But.. now you have me wondering if I could turn him into a planter and still have the eyes light up. He is hollow resin so it would just be a matter of cutting out the top and figuring out how to protect the pieces of the solar unit.

That is just a fraction of the houseplants I have. During the winter I have a hard time finding somewhere for all of them and I usually lose a few. Out of all the house plants I own I think I only bought four of them and the rest were given to me and I have propagated them to death. I can root anything you see up there so if you are ever interested in having a few pieces of any of them just let me know. One piece of five plants can quickly fill a house. And most of them will root within a week in a glass of water or can be plunked down in a pot of soil just as easy.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 3:20PM
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Practical, "green" and pretty! I think you've done an awesome job with your projects.


    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 5:30PM
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Very nice!!! I love what you did with the rain barrels!! I have been wanting to get a couple myself. Where did you find the whiskey barrels? That would be a perfect look for what I'm doing with the landscaping. Also what is that purple plant you have on top of the barrels and in the small green pot?? I had some of that in my last yard, and I loved it but I can't remember the name of the plant. I know what you mean about houseplant. That is how I got most of mine as well. Or rescued the droopy ones at HD and Lowes LOL

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 5:46PM
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Thanks for the pics and info; very neat. Let us know how the "Propagation Station" works out!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 8:55PM
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The whiskey barrels came from a salvage place here in Shelby. Unfortunately and much to my dismay they came across them randomly and they won't be getting anymore. We called today to check and make for sure they hadn't tried to source them and no luck.

Although we just put them together we have had them since spring and have had a lot of people ask about where to get them. We have called around some and found a few places that will sell them for $95 but nothing even remotely as nice as the first deal. We planned on making some as gifts for family/friends but not being able to get them as cheap makes the idea less tempting. For what it is worth you can still put together a rain barrel for less than you can buy a finished one at that price.

The purple stuff is Tradescantia pallida aka spiderwort aka wandering Jew. They are super brittle. I break a limb or two every time I move one. The good news is, I just poke a hole in the pot and stick the broken piece in and they root very quick and spread like crazy. I have a few in the yard and they have returned every year.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 11:50PM
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And the "Salvage place" Salvage Depot by chance??? I like that place too.
So tell me, is it true??? I'm drooling just thinking about it, cuz I sure would take you up on that offer of yours if you are right here in my backyard!!!
I will be awaiting your reply....

:) Fran

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 2:42AM
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Yep. I live on the Kings Mountain side not too far from the mall. We moved here from Gastonia almost two years ago.

I know of two salvage places in Shelby. There is one on Washington street and another out here by the mall. I have actually never been to either and I'm not sure what the names are. Usually when we need something from one of those places my husband goes out and gets it in the truck. I have two young teens and a tween and I am not quite comfortable leaving them without supervision...just yet.

My husband brought home a bug and all the kids are coughing and sputtering. Maybe sometime next week if you are available we could meet up at the library or something. I already have several pothos cuttings in a pot and some of that nephthytis already rooted that you are more than welcome to. And of course if you feel comfortable rooting cuttings I can bring a few other varieties.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 1:40PM
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Oh man, I have been looking for someone in Cleveland Co. to trade with ever since I have been on GW...(sorry I mis-spelled your name)I was so excited. LOL.
Email me and we can talk.
Hope everyone feels better soon, summer colds just suck, with all this heat it just makes you feel worse too.

I think I can root some stuff, I have one of those heart shaped vines in water now, poor thing has been in it for over a year. It seems happy, I just keep the water changed, I KNOW, I KNOW, I know...I WILL get it in dirt...I just haven' isn't stressing so neither was I..LOL.

But really, email me...WOW, I have a FLOWER NEIGHBOR!!!
:) Fran

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 3:18PM
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I sent an email earlier...don't know if you got it. I went outside for a bit and it was still just too hot so I am back inside until the sun goes down just a little LOL.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 5:07PM
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Oh yeah, I almost forgot. Brian actually went down to the place we got the barrels from and while they do not have anymore they gave him the number of the person they got them from. Apparently they changed hands a few times before ending up at the salvage store. The guy who sold them originally, after finding out how hard they were to get, was actually trying to buy them back. They think that one of the people in between still has some though. We should get a call sometime tomorrow. There is no telling how much that guy will sell them for now that he has found out how desirable they are but we might get lucky.

Anyway.. if anyone is interested in having one let me know and I can secure one for you until you can pick one up.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2008 at 1:54AM
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Oh my, I would love one!! But I don't know when I would be able to get to your area. My best bet would be to search out some of the old stores around here and see if I can find one. I'm going to take that approach for now and see what I can find. And many thanks for the name of the plant, I was over in Monroe NC today for a Dr's appointment and ran past one of my favorite greenhouses in Stallings. Bingo!! They had the plant!! It's listed on the tag as a Setcreasea Tradescantia Purple Queen. He only had a couple left and I picked one up there today. I can't believe I haven't been able to find it this year anywhere else. Yes, they will come back when planted in a good spot in the yard. Again, my many thanks for the info!! :-)

    Bookmark   July 26, 2008 at 9:48PM
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It'll be the only one you ever need lol. They are brittle but when one breaks off all you have to do is stick it down in the soil in the pot and they root really quick.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2008 at 1:06AM
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