21 March 2010

made: Bamboo Planter

Our old pooch Libby had a penchant for landscape design, always chewing up things that were in her way, digging out plants or laying on top of them. Our new dog Bodi has more of a knack for interior design. And so a couple of months back - before we could figure out some of his little quirks - he decided that the curtain in the dining room was not to to his liking. So, he ripped it apart. That left us with an uncovered window, and re-inspired John to move forward with a bamboo garden he has wanted to install for a long time at the back driveway.

First step was to rent a cement cutter from Home Despot and cut out a hole for the new plants.

Then came the harder part: sledgehammering out the cement and getting all the cobbles out of the hole.

This weekend it all came together finally with the bamboo and the New Mexico river cobble. We opted for two plants of "Golden Goddess" clumping bamboo. With some luck (and water), it will grow to about 8 feet tall. But it's already doing the intended trick: screening the back window from the back neighbors and screening our ugly cement driveway from us.

John also had this creative idea for patterning the back window itself, rather than installing another curtain. He installed easy-stick window frosting on a few of the windows, leaving an open pattern for little views of the bamboo forest.

Bodi can see out the window panes at the bottom (which is what he was asking for in the first place) and we can see greenery and have a touch of privacy all at the same time.

We call this the new bamboo planter the "Healing Garden," and it's dedicated to John's mom Marie who is healing from a nasty broken leg (like a champ, I might add). The Healing Garden is a great new welcome point to the back garden and will tie in beautifully with the bamboo muhly growing beyond the gate once it greens up this spring.


Anonymous said...

Hello Grackle,
love the bamboo garden. esp the stones. I've been reading your blog for several weeks and and think your photos are excellent. I'm just starting up my own on the other side of austin, and would like to link to yours if that's ok. Have also mentioned you in an introductory post. have a look: www.thetrug.com

RBell said...

Very nice. Love the play of concrete, stone & bamboo - very zen. Great idea on the window pattern also.

Bob said...

Man you come up with some great ideas. I really like that. Beautiful bamboo and no escape for it. Excellent.

Pam/Digging said...

Very cool, Lee. I've never tried a cement cutter before, but now I totally want to!

The Curious Holts said...

How deep is that bamboo planter hole? Looks really shallow...I'm very curious as I'd love to do this.

Lee said...

Well, the cement was about 4-6 inches deep, but underneath that is pure black clay soil. The soil has probably been sealed beneath that concrete for about 50 years...

So, if the bamboo is happy it has tons and tons of space for root growth.

I've seen bamboo growing in planters and pots, so if you are space constrained, I don't think it would be a huge issue for the roots. But better check in with the nursery on that.