Jack-O-Planterns

Best. Idea. Ever. Seriously, I love these creative pumpkins from Garden Therapy! I’m so excited to feature them here today. Good thing Halloween is just around the corner because I don’t think I could wait a whole year to make them. These are so creative and so much better than the plain old ones. I especially like ‘Jack’s’ teeth. What a smiley happy pumpkin!

Here’s the link to Garden Therapy’s full article: Garden Therapy: Jack-O-Planterns

A Jack-o-lantern might be one of the most traditional ways to celebrate Halloween, but that’s not the only thing that you can do with a pumpkin. While most people will carve a face into their pumpkins and then put a candle inside, some very creative people have come up with the idea of using it as a planter. These look amazing and will be a welcome addition to anyone’s Halloween celebrations.

Tools Required

It’s very easy to make a jack-o-lantern planter yourself. This fun pumpkin idea only needs a few tools, including:

- Pen
– Knife
– Plants
– Compost
– Pumpkin

Plants

When it comes to plants you can choose pretty much anything. The types of plants that work the best for me include grasses in various colors, kale and ornamental cabbage. I’ve also experimented with a few other plants and you can get different looks by trying out different types of plants.

Step 1 – Hollowing the Pumpkin Out

The very fist step is to cut the top of the pumpkin and start scooping out all of the seeds and innards. This can either be discarded or kept. The seeds can be roasted and taste really nice, and the flesh can also be used to make soup if you wish.

Step 2 – Designing your Pumpkin

Next, you will need to decide what you want your pumpkin to look like. Normally this will be a smiley face with a toothy grin, although you can also design lots of other patterns. I find it easiest if you draw the design directly onto the pumpkin so that you have something to cut out.

Step 3 – Cutting the Design out

Once you have copied the design onto the pumpkin, it’s then a matter of using your sharp knife to cut it out. This is exactly the same as a regular jack-o-lantern so far. Be careful at this stage as you don’t want to hurt yourself, and you also need to be very careful to avoid breaking the pumpkin.

Step 4 – Filling with Compost

Once that’s all cut out you can then fill the pumpkin with soil or compost. Be gentle and don’t compress the soil too much as this could cause the design on the front to break.

Step 5 – Planting

Now you’re ready to plant. Before you actually plant anything in the pumpkin, it’s a good idea to try them in various locations. When you are happy with your design you can then plant it properly. Plants can be put in the top, around the mouth and even in the eyes.

Step 6 – Caring for your Jack-o-lantern planter

Your jack-o-lantern planter is very easy to care for. It needs the occasional water and it should last throughout Halloween. Once you have finished celebrating, simply remove the plants and compost the pumpkin. The plants can either be planted into other planters around the garden, or put into the garden.

Hopefully this fun pumpkin idea will get you in the mood for Halloween. It’s so easy to make, that it’s the perfect activity to help keep the kids occupied. It’s also something that’s slightly different and will become a real talking point.

Additional Resources: Looking for more pumpkin planter ideas?
Don’t miss this article by BHG.com and also this video by Martha Stewart.

Gardening Hacks That Will Make Your Garden The Talk Of The Town

These 15 tips from Viralnova are going to help take your gardening to the next level. The shower caddy hanging gardens are so clever. The shoe rack ones too. I can always take more gardening tips and fun ideas. Using eggs and lemons to start seedlings indoors are something I want to try also.

Get all the tips here-

Viralnova – Gardening Hacks That Will Make Your Garden The Talk Of The Town

Image Credit: viralnova.com

No Garden? Here Are 66 Things You Can Grow at Home In Containers

Everyone can have a garden, no matter how big or small their space. Dr Akilah El has a comprehensive list of thing that can be grown indoors in containers. I want to have some fruit growing in my living room. I’m thinking blackberries. How wonderful would that be???

Find all 66 things here…

Dr Akilah El – No Garden? Here Are 66 Things You Can Grow at Home In Containers

Image Credit: docakilah.wordpress.com

Tips On Preparing The Garden For Winter

I feel like I just got my garden growing and now I have to shut it down for the winter. Not fair! I still have some fall planting to do but for the most part I am done until next year. These simple tips from Plant Care Today will help save time in the spring and keep your from having to start from scratch. Now that would be unfair!

Check them out here…

Plant Care Today – Tips On Preparing The Garden For Winter

Image Credit: plantcaretoday.com

garden pallet ideas

I’m really excited to show off this great collection of projects from Home Ideas. It is everything you could ever want and more from a garden and pallet roundup. These DIYs aren’t expensive or time consuming and will totally transform your garden. Which do you want to try first?

See all 17 wonderful ideas here…

HomeIdeas:
17 Out Of This World Things To Do With Pallets In The Garden

Image Credit: homemadehomeideas.com

How A Girl Built A Gate

Christy over at Confessions of a Serial Do-it-Yourselfer has made the most beautiful garden gate and I am beyond excited to feature it here today. It is beyond amazing and so is the description of how she did it. If you were in look of inspiration, you’ll find it here. I am so impressed with this gate!

See her fabulous tutorial here…

ConfessionsOfaSerialDIYer – How A Girl Built A Gate

Image Credit: confessionsofaserialdiyer.com

This Guy’s Backyard Idea Was Insane Until I Saw It Finished. Really, He’s A Total Genius!

Turning trash into treasure. We’ve all heard that before but this guy really did it!

He turned the messiest backyard into the most stunning pool. These guys weren’t even pros. If an IT guy and a student of business can do this…then so can we! I’m so glad to have found this over at Diply. Check it out and be amazed.

Go here to see all 36 amazing project photos… HGTV – A Natural DIY Swimming Pool From Start to Finish

natural pool during

natural pool after

5 Important Tips when Building a Natural Swimming Pool

A natural swimming pool can immediately add interest to your back yard. A swimming pool will also boost the value of your property and make it much easier to sell in the future. This guide will look at five very important tips to consider when you are building a swimming pool in your back yard.

1. Planning

Digging holes and building a pool is a very time consuming thing to do. That’s why it’s so important you allow yourself a bit of time to plan your pool design so that everything is perfect. It’s a good idea to use spray paint to mark the area of the pool. This will allow you to see how much of the back yard it really takes up. There’s no point building a pool that’s too big or too small for your garden, otherwise you will regret it.

Try to sketch out how you intend the pool to look. Make sure you have remembered to address things like how you are going to access the pool and how deep you want it to be.

Instead of having a regimental rectangular pool, experiment with different levels. It’s possible to have a normal swimming pool which is allowed to overflow slightly to create a more natural looking pool. When done properly this looks amazing and will also be popular with kids who just want a paddle or play in the shallow water.

2. Asking for Help

Don’t try to dig the pool by yourself, instead ask friends and family round to help you. Most people will be pleased to assist you and might also have some fun at the same time. Cook a barbecue while digging the hole to say thank you to your helpers.

3. Filtration

You must choose a filtration system for your natural swimming pool. The type of system that you choose will depend on the size of your pool. These systems work by circulating all of the water in your pool and removing any debris. Ultraviolet lights are also sometimes used to kill bacteria in the water so that it’s safe to swim in and it doesn’t look dirty. The filtration system is quite big and will ideally need to be stored indoors somewhere. This can be located in a garage if convenient.

4. Use an Excavator

Digging a pool by hand would take a very long time and also mean you would have hands covered in blisters. A much easier solution is to hire an excavator. You can hire small excavators which can be used by anyone with only minimal training. Alternatively you can hire a excavator and driver to do the work for you. Dig down to your chosen depth and use a trailer to move the topsoil and dispose of it. Unless of course you could make use of the topsoil somewhere else in your garden.

5. Lining the Pool

The pool needs to be lined with waterproof material to stop the water from draining away. Before that though, a layer of thick felt should be used to protect the waterproof membrane. This will provide protection from roots and damage caused by people in the pool. Once the waterproofing is installed the whole side of the pool can be tiled using slate which has a beautiful natural appearance.

It’s not really that expensive or difficult to build a natural pool in your back yard. It will just take time and patience to do it properly.

Additional Resources: Looking for more natural swimming pool ideas?
Don’t miss this article at Mother Earth News and also this collection of photos at HGTV.