Posted on 19 April 2013 by urbangardencasual.com

Potting Bench: A Great Re-purposing Project

Photo Credit: Salvage #3 by 25kim used under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

By Mindy McIntosh-Shetter

I am a collector of many things.

Some of these items, I question why I collected them from a second-hand store or saved from the landfill.

Others, on the other hand, I know exactly what I am going to do with them when I pick them up. My find of a bathroom sink fell into this latter category.

This sink’s second life began one day when I was taking a walk.

On the side of the road, I saw a glimmer of light. It actually sparkled and glistened in the light.

Being curious, I walked up to see what it was and low and behold, it was a complete bathroom sink and vanity with gold colored hardware and crystal handles. How lucky I was to discover this find and I knew exactly what I was going to do with it.

I took it home, cleaned it up and noticed that the back was gone. While I was a little disappointed, it did not change my design plan and even worked out better in the end.

The first step in this process is to decide where you want your potting bench. I have found from experience that it is better to place it near a water source and close to your compost bin. After you have made this decision, the next step is to decide how it is going to be used. I know I know I just said we were going to make a potting bench and we are, but did you know that this simple sink can be used for other activities. It can be used as a sink to clean vegetables in an outdoor kitchen. It can also be used to clean pots before planting and turned into a cooler for drinks in the summer by just plugging it up and filling it with ice. It can also be used to hold planting medium.

After you have decided the scope of your sink’s use, the next step is to set it up. Since my vanity has no back, I am going to line up the back with the brick finish of my home. Before using it, I am also going to check and make sure that the vanity is level and adjust accordingly.

Since I am so lucky to have found a vanity with shelves, I am going to organize my pots, fertilizer, watering can, plant labels, markers, soil and other plant accessories inside the vanity.

After weighting the pros and cons of just having a potting bench or a multipurpose outdoor vanity, I decided I just wanted a potting bench. In doing so, I hooked the outdoor facet to the sink and created a top for the sink itself. This allowed me to keep my soil in the sink and not have to worry about it getting wet or weed seeds blowing in and contaminating the planting medium.

Until we blog again, as you enjoy the spring this season, take the time to examine what sparkles and shines. Your finds may surprise you.

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