13 December, 2008

Kitchen Herb Planter For Peanuts

Want to make a few planters for herbs in the kitchen but the garden or hardware store is just too far away? More importantly, do you want to re-use and re-purpose old stuff you'd only be sending to the tip or to the recycle center anyway?
I used some 2.2litre soft drink bottles I had and was feeling guilty about.  I cut it just under the halfway mark and again just above, because these bottles have a stiffener ridge cast into them which gets in the way.
I make a small puncture in the bottle base bit, about 1 - 2 cm down from the cut edge, just to prevent air locks when filling.  Generally a "crease" forms when you jam the two parts into one another and lets air in, but the puncture is just in case that doesn't happen.  (You don't want the bottom airtight because the reservoir won't fill up properly if the seal is too good.)
So then you stuff some kind of porous wadding (I used a fibre wool I salvaged from some old air conditioning ducting but old teeshirt or towel or dishcloth would probably do) through the neck of the top part of the bottle and press in some potting mix fairly tight.  As you can see from the last pic above, that crease did form when jamming the two bottle halves inside one another.
And that's it, really.  Add enough water (about three or four standard cups) to drain through and fill the reservoir, plant your seeds or seedlings, and keep the watering up.  Some liquid fertiliser applied every week or two will help - but not much as it will collect in the reservoir.  And keep it where it will get light, by a window, and don't let it dry out.

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