new (old) garden sink/work table

mary_lu_gwAugust 8, 2010

Some of you may remember a while back I had mentioned that the PO had left an old concrete laundry sink under some trees. This summer DH asked a friend to make a metal cart to hold it. It now resides on the patio and is a potting table and sink combined. Water supplied by hose when needed. The top is an old metal table top that we had picked up at an auction for $4.

The friend who made the cart would only take a steak in repayment. He put casters under it so that it can be moved easily (the sink probably weighs 200+ lbs) He even drilled 4 holes on the front brace so that I can hang tools on it. For now I just have an old bucket sitting under it to catch the water. Want to find a nicer one. Can you tell that I am "tickled"?

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Oh, forgot to ask. DH thinks I should paint the outside of the sink and maybe do some stencils on it? What do you think?
Part of me thinks I should just leave it as is.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 1:43PM
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memo(Zone 4B Nebraska)

What a great potting table, MaryLu. I like it just the way that it is. Paint on an outdoor cement objects is often very short lived. My only suggestion is to make sure it's completely empty of water and keep it covered with heavy plastic in the winter, keep it dry in winter! I have a cement water fountain and I have trouble with moisture and paint degrading it in winter.


    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 1:59PM
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Lilyfinch z7 mid tn

Oh man! how charming! I love it. And if you have more pics we'd love to see more photos of your beautiful garden ! It looks like a pretty cottage garden in the background. I think it would look nice a dark color, to kinda blend in with the wall its in front of? just my humble opinion.
I had a lovely potting bench made from a clearance foyer table i painted pale yellow. Somehow got lost in my move from ny to pa. I miss it!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 2:02PM
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pfmastin(8 N. Carolina)

I also say keep it the way it is. It's fabulous. What a work horse that will be!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 2:13PM
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It is lovely. I think that it is pretty as it is, but would really look good painted a solid vivid color such as cobalt or lime. Of course, as stated above, it is all weather dependent. I wonder if an oil based paint, such as rustoleum (sp?) would work, as there are some concrete pavers in my garden that I would like to paint. Awesome to have such wonderful friends and hubby!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 3:41PM
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Unless you want to add to your future work; leave it be and let it just age gracefully. I love the matching orange door. I think that is enough.

What a super friend for doing that! I think I would make him a loaf of homemade bread too.

How about a small galvanized tub or bucket....copper would be wonderful but could get really pricey.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 5:06PM
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Mary-lu, I've been away from here for a long time, but it's wonderful to pop in and see some more of your fabulous home and garden.
Great idea and a big round of applause to your handy friend!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 6:05PM
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memo...that was my thought. More maintence! Thanks for the heads up, but this sink has been sitting outside year round for the past 10 years, with the drain in the bottom, water sitting is not a problem. But will be sure to check it.

lilyfinch, the shed may be changing color. We are thinking of siding it to match the garage we built last year. Sorry to hear that your potting bench got lost.

pfmastin, thanks. And yes it is a work horse. I have already used it (temporarily up on blocks until the cart was built) and it works great.

gldno1, great idea. I have several sitting around somewhere. Will have to check but I think they might be too big though. The one that would have been perfect is on my front porch used as a planter and would not be able to use, as I had DH drill holes in the bottom for drainage. :-(

homemaker, welcome back! It's always nice to see old friends. And I mean that in the nicest way! I am not around as much as I used to be, but still pop in and lurk quite often. Just don't post as often. Gardens about as done as it will get, just tweaking it now. So it's mostly more of the same for me.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2010 at 7:27PM
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janepa(Z5-6 PA)

Hi Mary lu,
Just checked in and saw your post.

What a great sink/work table. If you decide to let it as is I think it looks fine. If you decide you might want to give it a touch of color, how about staining it? I would go with a shade that is already in the picture such as the roof or the barrel to the right. Going with stain I believe would be almost maintenance free since it would probably give a 'mottled' effect and would weather accordingly. You could decide if it needs to be restained or leave as is. I think stain is easier, and it doesn't chip as paint might. I have used paint for pavers and it is still holding up well, but now I wish I would have left them natural or used stain in earthtone shades.

Your sink is great, whatever you decide to do with it.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 7:51AM
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Leave the sink unpainted. The more rustic it becomes the better it is. I might suggest that you attach a hose to the bottom so you can drain the water into the garden instead of having to empty out that bucket each time.

How do you add water to the sink? can you set up a small barrel with a faucet so you have a source of water?


    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 10:53AM
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I vote for not painting goes so well with your shed! You look so organized - I love it!

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 12:05PM
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littledog(z7 OK)

I'd "paint" the outside with buttermilk and ground moss and let nature take it's course.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 12:48PM
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I really like it, and also vote for leaving it as is - no paint.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 2:57PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

I love it! Marylu, I have a sink like this too, and they just get better looking when crud and guk builds up. I think they have plenty of character without being cutesy. Yours looks fantastic the way it is.
Mine is here, sitting in the driveway waiting for the patio to someday go in...and we'll use it for veggie and fruit washing, maybe some laundry. I plan to run an irrigation line, like a soaker house from it.
I love your cart for it, I think that's a fine idea!

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 4:01PM
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I love it "au naturele" as well. It would also look good with a simple one-color stencil on the front of each tub. It would also look good with the buttermilk/moss idea. I just don't think you could make such a great item look bad, unless you went for the pirate look and painted skull and crossbones on the front of it, and then again, that might just look awesome too!! Cheryl

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 4:23PM
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Thanks everyone! Honestly, I am glad most of you agree that it's natural look is not bad. Perhaps a simple stencil as seamommy mentioned, but I think at least for now, I will leave it as is.

Sadly there is no water faucet nearby, so the hose will have to do. I do have a rain barrel nearby, so that is an option for potting. even has a built-in wash board in one of the tubs! I believe the metal rim around the edges and also the wash board are made of zinc. It has sat outside for over 10 years with no protection and there is no rust. There is a crack in the cement on the back top where the built-in soap dish is, you can see it in the 2nd picture. However, the rim around the outside is very sturdy and tight, so should not have a problem with that corner breaking away.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2010 at 7:01PM
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