So, youʼve used the drawers of that old dresser to make a vertical veggie garden (part 1), but what do you do with those old dresser bodies? Use them as raised beds (part 2)! These are very simple to make, plus they are naturally deep, perfect for those root crops like carrots and beets.
• older dresser body – we used two small six drawer dresser bodies
• scraps of plywood or planks – (if necessary) to cover any open sides
• lattice – for climbing plants (optional)
1. Lay the dresser body so that the back of the dresser that will eventually be on the ground, is facing up.
2. Drill small 1/4 inch holes for drainage. I drilled a random pattern of holes sufficient to drain the raised bed in case of a rainy summer.
3. Next, flip the dresser over so that the back with the drainage holes is on the ground.
4. Then, if your dresser has a missing side, like ours did because they were originally built- in, cut your plywood or wood planks to the length of the dresser and attach with nails.
5. Finally, fill the dresser body with dirt and plant.
NOTE: You may chose to waterproof the inside of the dresser before planting, but we had such good luck with the drawers that we didnʼt waterproof. Waterproofing will makes sense depending on the material of the dresser.
Since we planted peas and sun flowers and wanted something for them to climb and lean against, we took some old left over lattice and attached it to the dresser body using nails.
Also, we had natural dividers for our plants since we used an old six drawer dresser. If your dresser only had one drawer per row, you could always cut some scrap and nail in some dividers so that you can visually separate the plants in the bed.
Finally, if your growing season is short like here in Alaska, you can try this: we covered the beds initially with 4mm plastic to encourage our seeds to germinate. We just stapled it to the dresser body so that we could peel it back to water, then re-stapled it.
We hope these instructions are helpful and that you give this a try. It’s a great way to recycle and it’s the quickest way to make raised beds that Iʼve been able to find. Happy gardening.
Dresser drawers available on DiggersList.com. Raised & Veggie Garden photos courtesy of Meg.