Out of Garden Space? Burlap Sacks Can Help!

burlap sack planters Photo: Burlap sacks used for gardening to save space

There are a lot of different ways to grow a veggie garden in a small or limited amount of space. Where it can get tricky, however, is with larger plants such as tomatoes. In many cases, pots or other containers can fall in the realm of too much or not enough. A good universal option, and an economical one, is a simple burlap sack.

Much good can be said about burlap. For one, it is biodegradable, so when it’s time of usefulness has past, it can be disposed of in an environmentally friendly manner. Burlap is also a neutral color that will blend well around your home, appearing as a natural part of the scenery. These sacks are also cheap to purchase, coming it at around $2 each or possibly less if you shop around and/or have local access to them.

In order to begin gardening with burlap sacks, you will first need to check the seams of your sacks. This is to make sure there are no loose threads where too much soil can escape. If there are questionable areas, they can be sewn up quickly and easily. Once the sacks themselves are deemed stable, it is a good idea to plan the placement pattern you will be using. This is because it is much easier to move empty sacks and fill them on location that to lift and move them once full.

After deciding on locations, it is time to prepare your sacks to be filled with soil. To do this, you want to stand each sack upright and fold the top half down over the bottom half, covering the outside of the sack. This fold will not only add extra strength and reinforcement to your sack but will also hide the often coarse cut along the top of the sack, making it more aesthetically pleasing. With this fold complete, stand your sack upright and open it as wide as you can. This will be tough to do in a uniform manner, but the goal is mainly to open it wide enough to receive soil.

At this point, you can begin to add soil, ideally doing so slowly at first, making adjustments as your sack starts to take shape. Each sack should hold about a five gallon bucket worth of soil if folded in the manner discussed above. Depending on what you wish to grow, you may choose to make your sack round, oblong, or even square by shaping it as you fill. As you add soil, add plants, seeds, or bulbs at the optimum growth level, taking into consideration the age and type of plant you wish to grow. If necessary, add a support structure as well. In the event that you feel the need to move your burlap sacks once full, do so prior to the first watering. Once water is added, the degree of difficulty associated with moving filled sacks increases exponentially, making the process almost prohibitive.

You can expect to get a season’s use out of burlap sacks before they need to be retired. Even then they are not useless as they can usually still be cut down and used to create weed barriers in trouble spots. In the end, burlap sack planters are able to aid the gardener with limited space while looking pleasant at the same time. Use them to contain plants lining driveways or sidewalks to add to the curb appeal of your property or to simply get in some extra veggies you may not have otherwise had room to grow.


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