Spring is in the air! Well sort of. This past weekend, we had the most fabulous tease of spring weather. It was absolutely amazing. Oh I know better than to think that snow is over for the season. But I see no need to acknowledge reality here. After all, reality can be such a buzz kill. We’re just going to avoid it for the moment and have sunny thoughts. So on that note, Yay!! Spring is coming! Whoop Whoop, let’s celebrate. How about we build a gnome garden. That’s springy right? And it has gnomes. Who doesn’t love gnomes?
Now before I get all up into the DIY details, you may be wondering why my gnome garden is elevated like that?
Well funny story….It started last summer when I spotted a cute little gnome kit at my local garden center. The kit was one small gnome and some mini furniture. By the way, gnomes don’t mind living outside but they detest sitting on the ground so you must provide them tiny furniture. I was happy to help the orphaned gnome so I promptly purchased the kit, a pot and some plants. I justified my impulsive purchase by telling myself it would be a bonding activity for my 11 year old son and I. (Yep, more of my total disregard for reality.)
I brought it home, pulled my son off the xbox and we happily put it together. Mostly happy anyway and it provided the best 3 minutes of bonding time I could have ever imagined. I really out-did myself on this one and I proudly put it on my patio table. And it was super cute for about a week until my little brown dog (the gnome hater) took notice. At this point brown dog decided gnomes make great dog toys and he began snatching the unarmed gnome from his home and pillaging his furnishings. Then little brown dog would run off into the yard with his loot to do a victory lap. Jerk.
Yeah, thanks Ray (little brown dog). Sigh*
And that would have been the end of our gnome adventure but somewhere during the process my older son also took an interest in gnome life. I guess he decided since the first gnome planter idea went so smoothly that we needed to do it bigger and better and more complicated. What can I say, he takes after his Mom. (poor fellow) So at this point I have a dog who eats gnomes, a younger son who could care less because he has gone back to playing his xbox and an older child planning an entire gnome city. The oldest has even convinced grandma to take him to the garden center to purchase a load of gnome gear for his future gnome wonderland. Hmmmm, This wasn’t exactly the plan. I loved seeing my son’s creative interest but we still had a big problem to solve -the little brown Godzilla running around the backyard. If gnomes were in our future, they were going to need a home out of reach of little brown dog.
Around this time, my neighbor was getting rid of some bar stools and wanted to know if I wanted them. Of course, I happily took them off her hands. I didn’t need bar stools but I saw they would make great table legs.
Building the Patio Gnome Garden Box
This gave me the idea to build a garden table for our little gnome friends. I was able to build a garden box and use the legs of the stool to elevate it into a garden table. The garden box didn’t need to be fancy.
I made a rough box out of some old scrap barn wood that I had from when my sister pulled down one of her barns. All I did was cut a few boards to form a bottom and then four boards to create the sides. I secured them together with wood screws. It was so easy to do. Then I detached the seat from the stool.
Next attached the frame to my box.
My husband helped me center the box on the stool frame.
Then I cut and stapled a piece of tarp on the inside to hold the dirt better. I did poke a couple of holes in the bottom for drainage.
I sanded the sides a little because I wanted to get off some of the old barn paint. It was basically ready at this point. All I needed to do was fill it would dirt, some plants and my son James could get to work on his village.
We purchased a few succulents from the garden store but most of the plants came from our house garden beds. We took creeping tyme , hens and chicks and moss that was already growing in the back yard. I gave him some pebble rocks and blue rock glass that I had in my craft stash. He then brushed me away so he could put his plan together. Apparently, I was in the way. Ha! I went inside and painted some little rocks to look like strawberries for his garden. He liked those and added them to his “plan”.
It really did turn out fun and best of all, it was dog proof! We were able to upcycle items we already had so the structure basically cost us $0. And it worked well on our patio all summer long.
What do you think?
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