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Upcycled File Cabinet Planters

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I have a teeny tiny yard and was desperate for a thrifty gardening solution.
I needed something narrow to fit on our patio and tall to accommodate a lot of plants right under our trellis. I love growing as many veggies as I can for our family in the summertime. The planters at gardening stores are so pricey and I needed a better solution.
I found six different metal file cabinets at thrift stores around town. I decided black spray paint would bring them together and create a cohesive look on my back patio.
Check out the blog post for all of the details on how we pulled this together and to find out how it is working for us!

To see more: http://too-much-time.com/2015/06/upcycled-file-cabinet-garden-planters.html

  • Miriam I
    Miriam I Bay Shore, NY
    on Jun 22, 2015

    This. Is. Brilliant.

  • Carole
    Carole Australia
    on Jun 22, 2015

    Love it. They look quite sophisticated too! I used a cedar book case in the garden as a raised planter and it works quite well. So many uses for those old file cabinets. You would pay a motza for raised planters in that material and colour at a nursery!

  • Kate
    Kate Littleton, CO
    on Jun 23, 2015

    FILE CABINETS?? Color me gobsmacked. Miriam said it perfectly. This. Is. Brilliant. I so agree with Carole, too. The look is sophisticated and upscale. And I want it on my deck. You hit it out of the park with this sleek, modern aesthetic. While I love admiring the rustic and country looks, and, of course, English garden ideas, I run across far fewer ideas for settings like mine, which run toward mountain contemporary. This would so work for me. Thanks for being brilliant, and thanks for taking the time to share this online. Brava!

  • Jodi
    Jodi Bourbonnais, IL
    on Jun 23, 2015

    Great idea but is the paint they use on the cabinets food safe?

    • Kim @ Too Much Time On My Hands
      Kim @ Too Much Time On My Hands Denver, CO
      on Jun 23, 2015

      @Jodi There is no paint on the interior of my cabinets. I guess I am hoping the rest is ok....I need to go do some research now:)

  • Kate
    Kate Littleton, CO
    on Jun 23, 2015

    I understand the paint to be on the exterior of the cabinets only. The interior of the cabinets, if thoroughly scrubbed and cleaned, would probably be fine, since most file cabinets are sheet metal made from carbon steel--a common metal used in food storage and prep. (Since I plan on trying this project, your question prompted me to do a little research. I'm really not a file cabinet Cliff Claven.) That said, maybe the cabinets are lined with something. I read the full tutorial, and it didn't say either way. I'll either line the cabinets with something or use an epoxy or shellac on the inside, both of which come in food grade. Mostly because I want the gorgeous things to last. My concern is the metal in contact with the soil and water being more prone to rust--not from a health standpoint, as rust itself isn't an issue, unless you have an iron overload disorder or something. The iron from the rust would probably even help the plants. But I'd like my diy efforts to hold up for many years and not deteriorate too quickly.

    • Jodi
      Jodi Bourbonnais, IL
      on Jun 23, 2015

      @Kate I def am doing this as I have a metal cabinet or three in the garage! Lining with a food grade plastic seems safe. Thanks!

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