Most of the information you’ll find about using pallets to build raised garden beds involves taking them apart and using the lumber to start from scratch. These ideas all work well for someone who is handy, and who has access to tools and the space to work in. However, those who aren’t so fortunate or so handy can still use the pallets as they are to make raised gardening beds.
Things You Will Need
- Pry bar or hammer
- Garden rake
- Garden spade
- Wheelbarrow or bucket
- A basic stringer pallet is constructed of two to four stringers, made of thicker lumber, to which lighter boards are attached to form a solid platform top and a base. This leaves two opposing ends of each pallet open. If too much soil drains from the open ends, attach extra deck boards to the stringers with nails, or position your pallets so that the stringers from one pallet provide a barrier for the open side of the ones next to it in the row.
- A block pallet is constructed using blocks of solid lumber rather than long stringers. This creates narrower openings on all four sides of the pallet. Block pallets placed closely together as a raised garden bed form an effective barrier against soil erosion during watering.
- As with any other raised-bed garden, you may have to water your pallet garden more often, as water drains more quickly from raised beds than it does from level ground. Water gently so as not to wash the soil away. If you notice some soil washing away, replace it with more and pack it lightly around the plants.
- Old pallets that have spent years outside in the sun and rain are safe to use as raised garden beds, as any harmful chemicals will have leached out of the lumber and won’t contaminate your garden soil.