Help! There are Slugs in My Pallet Garden

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wood pallet strawberry garden

Selena from Tacoma sent in a few pictures of her strawberry pallet garden recently–along with a plea for help.  She wrote,

I built a strawberry box in my garden this year using a reclaimed pallet thinking that elevating the strawberries would help keep the slugs away.  However, I have found that baby slugs have no problem making their way up the box to get to the berries!  Do you have a suggestion on how to keep the slugs away without using chemicals? I would prefer an organic or homemade remedy.

slugs eating my strawberries

Yep, that is going to be a problem.   Obviously, your slugs have a taste for the good stuff. ;)

The key to treating them organically {in my opinion} is catching them early.  There are a couple of different methods you can try.  First up:  beer.  Not for you as a coping mechanism, but for the slugs.  They love the fermented yeast in the beer and will make their way into the beer where they will eventually drown.  {If you aren’t into purchasing alcohol, no worries, you can use non-alcoholic beer.}  Just take the can, a shallow yogurt cup or something like it {a kid’s to-go applesauce would work great} and stick it into the pallets, level with the strawberries.  Fill the container with beer and check it in the morning.  You should have dead-as-a-door-nail slugs floating in it.

strawberry pallet garden

Beer is just a first line of defense, though.  You should also combine it with hand-picking any slugs you see.  They like to come out and wreak all sorts of havoc at night, so catching them to squish them {a very therapeutic past-time, if I do say so myself} can be tricky.

For a little more aggressive treatment, you’ll have to go with organic options that you can buy at your Home and Garden store.  I know quite a few gardeners and chicken owners who swear by diatomaceous earth, which is still an organic option.  It’s  a white powder made from crushed fossils of diatoms { a rock}.  It basically cuts the slugs as they crawl across it.  {People also use it as an insecticide, to give their chicken dust baths in order to prevent poultry lice and mites, etc.}  I haven’t personally used it, so I can’t swear by it, but again, I have heard really good things about it.

strawberries in wooden box

My personal favorite organic method is Sluggo.  It still qualifies as an acceptable treatment in organic gardening.  It is basically iron phosphate {which doesn’t harm pets or other wildlife}.  It causes slugs to stop feeding, and as a result, die.  I have found it to be incredibly effective, when other methods have failed.  You have to be pretty religious about applying it weekly {during watering season}, as both a treatment and maintenance.

I am sure there are other methods you can try, but those are the ones that I am most familiar with.  If any of you have tried other successful slug abatement, make sure to leave it in the comments below!

~Mavis

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.



Pallet Garden Pumpkin Trellis

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Pallet Garden Pumpkin TrellisA big THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in their photographs and stories. I hope by sharing other peoples pictures and stories here on One Hundred Dollars a Month we can all have a rock star garden this summer. Keep them coming!

diy pallet garden trellis for squash

KK from Preppy Pink Crocodile sent in a few photos of a pallet garden trellis she  built for her community garden allotment last summer and I thought it was so clever I wanted to share it with you.

Here is what KK had to say…

I live in a city without much yard space, so I garden through an incredible community garden program here, Capital District Community Gardens.  My allotment is small, only about 200 square feet.  So I had to plan carefully to take the greatest advantage of the space.
diy pallet garden trellis for squash
I found a few wood pallets for free in an ally and planned to use them in another way altogether.  But then I decided they might make a nice climbing structure for squash and melon vines.

diy pallet garden trellis

I simply attached two hinges to the top so that I could fold and unfold the structure to my liking.  And once I liked the spacing, I nailed a scrap piece of wood to both sides to keep it solid and strong all summer.  In the fall, I just removed the nails from the scrap wood on the sides, folded it up, and easily stored it until this coming spring.

diy pallet garden trellis

I planted squash, and eventually beans too, along both sides of the structure.  As the vines grew, I helped them climb in and out of the pallets.  Not only did it save space in the garden, but it added a ton of interest too.  Sadly, I lost a lot of squash vines to nasty ole squash bugs last year.  But I learned a lot (like how to easily remove the eggs before they hatch) and will be better prepared this year.

DIY Pallet Garden Pumpkin Trellis

I actually re-used hinges from another project so the total cost was … FREE!  My favorite price!  It was also a lot of fun to be a little creative in the garden.  It was certainly an unexpected and much discussed piece in our community garden space last summer.
Wow, what a cool trellis KK! Thanks for sharing.

heat treated wood pallet
If you would like to build you own pallet garden be sure to read my Pallet Gardening 101: Creating a Pallet Garden tutorial.
~Mavis

Strawberry tower made from fence boardsVertical Strawberry Tower 

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Crafts - Made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.
  • Your pictures and stories about your pets. The more pictures and details the better.
  • Garage Sale, Thrift Store and Dumpster Diving pictures and the stories behind the treasures you found including how much you paid for them.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Pallet Gardening – Lettuce and Strawberries

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mavis butterfield

Yesterday Lucy the puggle dog and I worked out in the garden for a few hours tending to garden seedlings and moving things around a bit. One of the major things we did was haul an entire gutter of lettuce plants over to the pallet garden.

lettuce start

The lettuce was starting to press up against the sides of the greenhouse walls so we decided to transplant the dozen or so lettuce plants in with the strawberries already growing in the pallet garden.
pallet garden

Lettuce and strawberries, they were made for each other.

By moving the lettuce plants to the pallet garden it allows them stretch their leaves a bit and grow to a full sized head of lettuce {like what you might find in the grocery store}.

pallet gardening

After we were done planting, we started the process all over again.

gutter gardening lettuce

Lettuce seeds + water + a little love = baby lettuce starts.greenhouse lettuce gardening

I think later this week we’ll move the other garden gutter we have filled with lettuce starts out to the garden as well. pallet garden pictures

Companion planting is cool, don’t you think?

So what’s new in your garden?

Is there anything you like to plant together?

~Mavis

heat treated wood pallet

Want to learn more about wood pallet gardening and how I put mine together? Click on the pallets above and it will take you to my first pallet garden post of the year. You’ll also learn what to look for when choosing a pallet.

How to Install Gutters in a Greenhouse

New to gutter gardening? Check out this tutorial on how I installed my garden gutters in my greenhouse.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Pallet Gardening – Growing Lettuce and Strawberries Together in Pallets

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strawberry pallet gardenWhile I was working in the garden yesterday I snapped a few photos of our pallet gardens.

strawberry pallet garden

The strawberries we transplanted last fall have begun to come back to life and are leafing out really well now. So much so that I may need to divide them again here pretty soon. pallet garden lettuce

The buttercrunch lettuce we transplanted a few weeks ago are beginning to take off as well. pallet gardening lettuce

I know it’s hard to believe, but in about 60 days this pallet will be filled with 16 heads of lettuce. And that my friends is the best part about gardening if you ask me. Watching things grow. It always amazes me how something so small can turn into a full sized plant in just a short period of time. I LOVE it!!lucy the puggle dog

And so does inspector Lucy. ;)

Okay, so maybe she just loves being outside. pallet gardens

This year I think I’m going to stick to growing lettuce and strawberries in our 6 pallet gardens. Last year I grew chard, celery, beans and a few other odds and ends but the strawberries and the lettuce did the best overall… so that’s what I’ll be growing in our pallet garden this year.

Keepin’ it simple. That’s my motto for this summer.

~Mavis

heat treated wood pallet

Want to learn more about wood pallet gardening and how I put mine together? Click on the pallets above and it will take you to my first pallet garden post of the year. You’ll also learn what to look for when choosing a pallet.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Pallet Gardening – How to Create a Wood Pallet Garden

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pallet garden gardening

Yesterday I transplanted my first batch of lettuce seedlings to my wood pallet garden. I put the pallet garden together last year using 6 brand new pallets from a local wood company and I was so thrilled with the results, that I’m doing it all over again this year.

Not only are pallet gardens cool, but they are great for the gardener who is a little tight on space so I decided to repost my directions on how to create a wood pallet garden today from scratch. {I can’t believe how much Lucy has grown!!} ;)

DIY Recycled Wood Pallet Garden

Basically all you really need is a wood pallet, some good soil and a packet of seeds. Using a wood pallet to start a garden can not only be a great space saver, but you don’t have to deal with tilling a large garden space or worrying about your plants rotting in the cold and wet soil during the spring and fall months because they are elevated.

heat treated wood pallet

What to look for in a wood pallet:

If you live in the Tacoma area you can find new wood pallets from Girard Wood Products in Puyallup, Washington for about $9 each. I bought my pallets here last year for my wood pallet garden and so far they have stood up to the elements. The photo you see above is a picture of a few recycled wood pallets we found behind some buildings last year.

Personally, I suggest using a new, clean, fresh pallet.

But  if you like to live life on the edge, 

Here are a few pointers when looking for recycled pallets:

Look for a pallet that has HT stamped somewhere on the pallet {it’s usually on the side}. This means the pallet was heat treated, or kiln dried as opposed to chemically treated.

Since you can never be sure what chemicals were stored on an old pallet or that there isn’t some sort of awful bacteria lurking inside the recycled pallets it’s recommended that you scrub the wood down with a mixture of diluted bleach and soapy water and let it dry out in the sun before using it to plant anything.

Also, be on the lookout for rusty nails or staples too.

how-to-make-a-pallet-garden

When I first imagined my backyard wood pallet garden, I thought I’d only use 3 wood pallets. But every time I walked by something about it didn’t look right. It need to be BIGGER. So I decided to expand the pallet garden to include 6 wood pallets. ;)

pallet-garden

One of the cool things about gardening, is there are oodles of different ways to grow your own food. There are so many containers to chose from, and more growing methods than I care to imagine. Everybody has an opinion, and there own way of doing things. And I think that’s the best part. We all do it differently.

pallet-garden-DIY

No two gardens {or gardener for that matter} will ever been the same, or have the same growing conditions, but the desire to try new things is something we all have in common. After All, wouldn’t it be boring if we grew the same things, in the same spot every year? How boring would that be?

DIY-Wood-Pallet-Garden

This is what my wood pallet garden looked like after I got all my pallets in place and filled them with garden soil. If you look closely you’ll notice I have landscape fabric beneath all the wood pallets to prevent weeds.  I can’t praise landscape fabric enough. Seriously, it’s the best stuff ever and you can find it a The Home Depot year round and Costco during the spring and summer months in giant rolls.

Pallet Gardening Garden

If you are an apartment dweller or live in a condo and want to try pallet gardening,  ”growing up” a vertical pallet garden might be the way to go instead. Anyway you look at it, garden is about the best hobby on the planet.

Wouldn’t you agree?

~Mavis

Looking for a little more inspiration?  Small Space Container Gardening by Fern Richardson is a great place to start.  Amazon currently has Small-Space Container Gardens in stock and ready to ship.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Mavis Garden Blog – Pulling Up Tomato Plants and Re-Planting Strawberries

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one hundred dollars a month mavis butterfield garden blog

In between rain showers yesterday I worked in the garden pulling up dying tomato plants and re-planting the strawberries from the greenhouse.garden boxes

Lucy Puggle was elbow deep in her own project of course.

growing strawberries in gutters

I pulled the strawberry filled gutters out of the greenhouse last week and finally got around to re-planting them yesterday in the wood pallet garden.

pallet gardening strawberries

For some strange reason, strawberry plants grow really in wood pallets.

So far it’s shaping up to be a pretty wet fall around here. Originally I was thinking about planting the pallets with lettuce seeds, but with all the rain we’ve been having, I think planting lettuce seeds would be like planting candy for the slugs. So why bother.

drying beans

Now, if I could just get the rest of my bean pods to turn yellow so I could pull them up and let them dry out in the garage I’d be happy.

pallet gardenHere’s what the pallet garden looks like right now. 5 pallets with strawberries, 1 with beans.

Keep Calm and Garden On,

~Mavis

 

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Pulling Up Chard and Planting Strawberry Runners

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strawberry runners

Lucy the Puggle Dog and I have been hard at work in the garden today pulling up strawberry runners and sprucing up the pallet gardens in the backyard.

pallet garden

So far this year we’ve grown lettuce, beans, strawberries, chard, zucchini, celery and spinach in the pallet garden. Lettuce has done the best.
swiss chard

The strawberry runners had overtaken one of the pallet gardens so we went ahead and pulled up all the Swiss chard for the chickens.

swiss chard

Originally I was planning on re-planting it alongside the chicken run, but once we got the chard down there the chickens saw it and started flipping out, so we just fed it to them.

Happy chickens lay happy eggs, right? ;)

strawberry runner

If you have never planted strawberry runners before, it’s supper easy. Just dig around the plant and gently pull it up. strawberry runner

Try and take a little of the soil it was grown in with you. When you replant the runner, make sure the soil is level with the strawberry crown {dark green part above the roots} and give it a quick drink of water.

pallet garden strawberriesIt’s been my experience that the runners will play dead for a week or two, then they’ll magically come back to life once the get settled into their new location.

Trust me, it won’t take long for the roots to take hold and grow. By next summer this pallet will be full of green leaves and fresh strawberries.

How about you? Are your strawberry beds a mess? Do you just pull up the runners and toss them, or create new beds for them for next year?

~Mavis wants to know.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Pallet Garden Photos – Lettuce, Strawberries, Beans and Chard

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pallet gardening lettuce

I went out to check the pallet garden yesterday and boy was I surprised at how well all the lettuce and bok choy are doing for this time of year. Normally the end of August/ Beginning of September is pretty warm here in the Pacific Northwest, but not this year.

I’m getting a sneaking suspicion that we are in for some cold and snowy winter. Which is fine by me. I’ll still be able to grow cold weather crops like carrots, beets and other root crops outside and lettuce in the greenhouse, but I’m not sure what I’ll plant in the unprotected pallet gardens yet.
pallet garden strawberries

Maybe strawberries. If you look HERE at what this pallet looked like back in April, you’ll see how much the strawberries have grown this year. It’s really pretty crazy how they spread out so quickly.

pallet garden beans

These are my calypso beans. I plan on drying these as soon as they dry up.

pallet garden swiss chard

Swiss chard. Ugg. I think when I re-plant my pallet garden I’ll move these down by the chicken run and plant them really close to the fence. The chickens LOVE Swiss chard {and kale} and it will give them something fun to do when they think I’m not looking.

pallet garden

Here is how the pallet garden looks right now. Do you think it’s too late to plant another crop of lettuce? Should I go for it, or save the lettuce seeds and just plant lettuce in the greenhouse instead? What do you think?

~Mavis

heat treated wood pallet

Want to learn more about wood pallet gardening and how I put mine together? Click on the pallets above and it will take you to my first pallet garden post of the year. You’ll also learn what to look for when choosing a pallet.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Pallet Gardening – The Strawberries are Going Bonkers!

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pallet gardening

Sorry for the lack of posts today everyone but it’s just to nice to be inside on the computer. ;)

pallet garden strawberries

Lucy the trouble puggle and I just harvested 3 pints of strawberries from our pallet garden we planted this spring.

mavis butterfield

Actually I think there may have been closer to 4 pints buy Lucy wouldn’t stop eating them, and really, who am I to complain. The fact that our puppy loves her fruits and vegetables is a good thing, right?

strawberries

I’m not sure if we’ll end up eating them all or if I’ll actually get to make something with them. I suppose that’s one of the hazards of having a garden, right? Eat it fresh while you can I say!

wood pallet garden beans

The strawberries are not the only thing growing in the pallets right now…

green bean

We’re gearing up for round 2 of the pallet garden green beans.

wood pallet garden lettuce

And take a look at the lettuce, it should be ready in a few weeks if the temps don’t get to hot around here. I don’t know about you, but I think I might be ready for fall.

I need a break! ;)

How is your summer garden holding up?

Mavis wants to know.

heat treated wood pallet

Want to learn more about wood pallet gardening and how I put mine together? Click on the pallets above and it will take you to my first pallet garden post of the year. You’ll also learn what to look for when choosing a pallet.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

Garden Apartment in Harlem, New York

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Harlem Garden Apartment

Wow! Check out this email {and all the juicy photos I received from Holly in Harlem, New York!

Hi Mavis!

I have been reading your blog since late winter/early spring of this year and I just love it. My husband Max (I call him Massimo!) and I bought our apartment in Harlem in NYC last summer. We live in 700 square feet, but the best part of the apartment is the deck out back that’s all ours! This was pretty much the selling point for the unit, and we LOVE it.

small space container garden

We’ve been in NYC 8 and 10 years respectively, and had never had outdoor space before or room for any gardens.  I spent all winter researching gardening and we have had a great first year trying it, with mixed success – I like to call it square inch gardening, as opposed to square foot gardening :)  I blog about it and cooking/DIYing/decorating at southernharlem.com.  I am a fellow couponer so I love your money-saving tips and tricks!

container herb garden

I also started some basil indoors from seed on a window sill using pots and plastic bags with holes punched in them.  This worked ok but the plants were leggy – I think they really didn’t get enough light. I think next year I want to turn our dining area into a seed starting area with grow lights in the spring if I can get Massimo on board. Of course, this is a hard sell when you live in 700 sq ft. since then we’ll just have to eat dinner in the bed (or outside, but in March that’s not so appealing..)

vertical pallet garden

Massimo built the pallet planter himself with a pallet a neighbor found and brought home for us on the subway (great neighbor!).  We used gutters to line it and drilled holes in them for drainage.He also built some of the planters (the one with the herbs in it, for example).  Next year we want to build planters all along the top of the wall surrounding the deck and also hang gutters on the walls for more planting space (at least one of us wants to..).

peach tree

We also have to leave room for actually using the deck, as Massimo likes to remind me.  I grew up on a farm in North Carolina, and I never really knew I had the farming gene in me until we got started here. Now I dream of raising a 4-H pig in my back “yard” and having a few chickens. Sadly, I don’t think our neighbors would go for that.

holly harlem

We signed Max’s parents up for a CSA in the winter and get their leftovers/get their shipments when they’re out of town and LOVE that as a way for urbanites to access fresh local produce.  In addition to our deck, we take great pride in our window boxes since all our neighbors see them.

murphy the dog

We also planted around the trees on our block, which has greatly cut back on the amount of litter. Our dog Murphy likes to help us – she actually eats potting mix with seedlings in it (got a good amount of our chives) – what’s with that?

Thanks for sharing your knowledge and providing a great platform for ideas.

Keep on being green,
Holly

garden boxes raised garden beds18 Amazing Garden Boxes from New York

A big THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in their photographs and stories. I hope by sharing other peoples pictures and stories here on One Hundred Dollars a Month we can all have a rock star garden this summer. Keep them coming!

~Mavis

If you would like to have your garden, chicken coop or something you’ve made featured on One Hundred Dollars a Month, here’s what I’m looking for:

  • Your Garden Pictures and Tips – I’d especially like to see your garden set ups, growing areas, and know if you are starting seeds indoors this year. If so,  show me some picture of how you are going about it.
  • Your Chicken and Chicken Related Stories – Coops, Chicks, Hen’s, Roosters, Eggs, you name it. If it clucks, send us some pictures to share with the world.
  • Cool Arts & Crafts - Made from your very own hands with detailed {and well photographed} pictures and instructions.
  • Your pictures and stories about your pets. The more pictures and details the better.
  • Garage Sale, Thrift Store and Dumpster Diving pictures and the stories behind the treasures you found including how much you paid for them.

If I feature your pictures and the stories behind them on One Hundred Dollars a Month, I will send you a $20.00 gift card to the greatest store in the world: Amazon.com.

Go  HERE for the official rules.

This post may contain affiliate links. These affiliate links help support this site. For more information, please see my disclosure policy. Thank you for supporting One Hundred Dollars a Month.

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