• Hometalker
  • Wilmington, DE
Asked on Jun 1, 2019

How to make a rowboat into a garden?

Jan ClarkGkWilliam


I have recently refurbished a garden area and I'm looking for creative ideas of what to plant in the rowboat. Fill it with dirt? Use flower pots? I was hoping to plant mostly perennials. I don't want vegetables!

q how to make a rowboat into a garden
4 answers
  • Nancy Turner
    on Jun 1, 2019

    You could do both, but if you use pots and live where it gets cold, the perennials will freeze, so you would have to bring them in for the winter. If you put drainage holes in the boat hull, you could fill it with garden soil and plant that way, but winter may still be iffy for them with the sides not in the ground and the cold will be able to penetrate the hull and possibly freeze the roots.

      on Jun 1, 2019

      I had a half barrel and turned it into a garden pond, it is so relaxing to watch goldfish swimming and the spray of water, does not take long, remove the seat in the middle, line with old carpets, etc in the bottom (this helps with insulation for the fish) then pond liner, this has to be taut all round, secured on the edges with staple gun, then cover with waterproof tape (to prevent staple rust seeping into the water). Varnish round the outside and the seats, when dry fill with water, leave standing overnight to ensure no leaks, add a pump to keep water clear, add goldfish gradually, decorate seats with pond plants, stand plants in boat so they grow over the seats and make shelter for wildlife, there you have it. A centrepiece for your garden! Good luck have fun. vera

  • William
    on Jun 1, 2019

    I would use flower pots. You have low areas in the hull and high areas on the seats. Easier to replace as they die off. Filling with dirt you would loose the look of the boat and just see the hull.

  • Gk
    on Jun 1, 2019

    I would use flower pots. You will be able to change up the plants every season if you'd like. If you ever decide you are "done" with the boat it would be much easier to move it without having to empty out any dirt first.

  • Jan Clark
    on Jun 1, 2019

    This is the best thing I've seen in awhile. SO cool, JoAnne! Here's my suggestion: plant your shorter perennials, like ground covers, (ones that will grow locally in DE and not be bothered by freezing) in the foot wells. So, layer in some rocks on the bottom, then nicely draining soil to just the seat level, then the ground covers and some mulch. If the ground covers are trailing, you can train them to go overboard! Then use your cleverness and transform some "regular" pots into something with a nautical theme. (Paint, stencils, and the like.) These pots will be your passengers. Finally, to complete the picture, you can add an old fishing pole or tackle box or shells or other fun things on the seats. Maybe even a hanging solar light for night fishing! Most of all, have fun with this treasure and make it your own! This one's a hum-dingy!!!

    • JoAnne
      on Jun 1, 2019

      Thank you for your excellent ideas! I had thought about adding a solar light to the piling. This house is on a river and the house is primarily a summer place. I like your suggestion about using trailing perennials and "fun" pots. I have a crab trap in the basement that I may utilize. Thanks again!

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