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Want to Make Backyard Gardening Easier? Make an Inexpensive, Creative Planter System with Cinder Blocks

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Creating a traditional backyard garden is a worthwhile project, especially for those who want to add more delicious, healthy foods to their family's menus, as well as those who just love to work closely with nature. Traditional backyard garden plots, however, require gardeners to remove the sod layer and till and amend the soil before they can even begin to plant seeds and transplant previously started plants. Since this work can take quite a lot of time and physical effort, many people lose interest and put aside their dreams of a backyard garden plot. If you love the thought of growing delicious vegetables in your backyard but lack the time or physical strength to till up a traditional garden plot, the following tips will help you quickly create planters in your backyard using inexpensive, readily-available cinder blocks.

The Cinder Block–Tiered Garden

Cinder blocks are the perfect size and shape to fit together easily to form all types of planters for vegetable and flowering plants in any backyard. Readily available through your local fencing contractor or building supply store, cinder blocks can be purchased a few at a time for small planters or in large quantities for bigger planters.

To make a small cinder block–tiered garden with space for eight plants, here is what you will need.

  • 10 standard cinder blocks with two holes
  • one large bag of potting soil
  • one piece of woven wire or lattice, measuring approximately 3' x 3' (these measurements are only a guide to assist you in making a trellis-like structure for the top-tier plants to climb; please feel free to recylce any scrap materials you have that would be suitable for this use)
  • your choice of seeds or started plants to fill the eight spots in your tiered cinder-block garden

Set one of the cinder blocks with a solid side facing up against a fence or wall in the area you have chosen. By stacking the lower blocks in each tier with a solid side facing up, a container will be formed to hold the soil securely in place for your plants. Stack two more on top of the bottom block, all with a solid side facing up, then add a fourth block on top, with the holes facing up. 

For the next tier, do the same, but stack the blocks only three high, making sure that the lower two have a solid surface facing up and the top one has the holes facing up. Repeat for the next tier, using only two blocks, with the bottom block having its solid face up and the top block having the holes facing up. For the fourth and shortest tier, butt a single cinder block directly in front of the tier with two blocks, remembering to leave the holes facing up to receive the soil.

Fill each hole with soil and plant seeds or plants, and then water lightly. The surface of the cinder blocks will help to insulate the soil and the plants from excessive heat and help them to retain necessary moisture, but you will still need to water as needed for your climate and weather conditions. This type of tier can be expanded to make the garden taller or wider with the addition of more cinder blocks and soil.

For more information about building with cinder blocks, contact a company like Harrington & Company