Reuse Plastic Storage Totes To DIY A Chic Non-Permanent Garden Bed

Gardening is a rewarding pastime that allows you to grow your own food and gives your outdoor space a beautiful, calming ambiance. However, if you're renting and unable to make permanent changes, or if you're not ready to commit to a fixed garden layout and want some wiggle room to experiment with your garden design, you will benefit from a temporary option. If so, why not try this non-permanent garden bed using storage totes? TikTok user OurManuHome shared their hack, which involves creating an affordable raised garden bed with several storage totes housed inside a planter box made of two-by-fours and planks.

With this hack, you're basically doing a fusion of a raised garden bed (thanks to the planter box) and container gardening. Besides offering visual appeal, growing your plants in containers lets you start with fresh, controlled soil, reducing the likelihood of dealing with weeds, pests, and soil-borne diseases.

How to make non-permanent garden beds using storage totes

If you have several plastic storage totes in your home, you can reuse them as containers for your garden bed. But before you do this, check the bottom or lid of your tote and look for their plastic recycling symbols. Ensure that the totes you'll be using have the number 2, 4, or 5. These are made of food-grade plastics, making them a safe storage material for your plants. Next, get a half-inch drill bit and drill holes at the bottom or lower side of your totes. Doing so ensures that they drain well. Poor drainage can cause water to pool at the bottom of the container and lead to root rot.

To DIY your non-permanent garden bed, start by lining up half-inch-by-six-inch planks in rows of three or more, depending on the height of your storage tote. Place a two-by-four block at the back and use brad nails to secure the planks firmly in place. While OurManuHome anchored their garden bed against a fence, using it as the backside of the bed, you can create a freestanding version by constructing a rectangular frame. This approach allows you to move the entire garden bed to different locations, offering great flexibility for your gardening projects.

Alternative ways to make your non-permanent garden bed

Aside from reduced mobility, building the planter against the fence might hinder proper air circulation, which can lead to fungal infections and mold growth. An alternative and easy way to increase air circulation, aside from widening your planter a little and moving it away from fences or walls, is to use some bricks as legs for each of the containers, like what Kenya's Decor Corner did. In addition to improving air circulation at the bottom of the containers, you also benefit from better water drainage.

Raising your totes also reduces strain on the back when you're checking your plants. Another straightforward strategy for doing this is to put your storage totes on benches, like Thrilled Thrifter Family TV's strategy, and create a planter box that effectively covers your totes to keep them visually appealing. If you're game for woodworking, you can make a raised plant bed in your garden instead. This elevated garden bed from The Family Woodworker can hold up to three storage totes. Elevating them this way keeps them out of reach of animals that are eating your plants.