Thirty Days in the Garden: Projects

I enjoy a good garden project. I like refreshing things as needed, but I know my skill set. I don’t tackle the unmanageable.

I have two garden projects lined up. Now that I’ve committed them to my blog, I know I’ll see them through.

San Jose summers are getting hotter, so I’ve learned to tackle outdoor projects long before the summer solstice. If I wait, then it’s just too hot.

My first project is to replace the top of my potting bench. The bench doubles as a sideboard when we entertain (ha), and it also stores our emergency earthquake kit.

Our earthquake kit lives here

I sanded and repainted the entire bench a few years ago and it turned out well. I used chalk paint, a first for me. I stenciled a fern pattern on the lower half, a small detail that made me smile. It’s fun trying something new.

2018: The rest of the bench looks good, but the top is shot

Unfortunately, the surface of the bench didn’t last. The paint started to chip after just two years. Last year I decided to repaint the surface with house paint. House paint is made to stand up to weather, so it seemed like a safe bet. It was a production buying anything last year due to the pandemic, but we waited in line, got the paint, and came home. I sanded and repainted the surface and it looked ok.

This is what it looks like today.

2021: A year after house paint application

This time I plan to remove the boards and replace them with a solid piece of wood. I’m hoping the hardware store can cut a couple of notches for a snug fit, but if not, I’m happy to go with a rectangle. I’ll apply to coats of the house paint, and I might even buy a topper to extend the life of the bench.

The second project will come as a shock to my regular readers: I’ve decided to replace my garden swing with a glider.

2012: My first and most ambitious makeover

Mike and the boys bought me the swing for Mother’s Day in 2009. I’ve finally crossed over from sentimental to enough already. The challenge with this swing is that the cover and cushions are built-in to the structure. You can’t remove them during the off-season. Instead, I covered the entire swing with a clear drop-cloth. This protected it from the rain, but not the squirrels. Season after season I replaced the cover, re-stuffed the cushions, made new pillows, only to start over again in a year or two.

Mike will help me take apart the frame so we can move it through our narrow sideboard. Curbside recycling will haul and recycle the frame. Only the tattered cushion and mesh will go into the landfill.

I ordered the glider on-line, so it’s slowly making its way across the country. I hope it’s as pretty as it looked in the photo. Once the glider is set up, I’ll replace the half umbrella cover, and I might even paint the tables.

Once upon a time

I’ll let you know how it goes.

10 thoughts on “Thirty Days in the Garden: Projects

  1. It is always good to have a project or two on the go, especially this past twelve months, and you have got two great projects to keep you busy. Such a shame about the seat. Your squirrels may be offended! 😉 I am afraid I do not know what a glider is! A bench? A rocking chair?


  2. One of the less known benefits of blogging. Announcing a project on your blog – the perfect incentive to complete it.
    I think you’ve done well since 2009 to keep your swing seat going but enough is enough and a replacement is probably well overdue.
    What is a ‘glider’ in this context? I assume you’re not intending to take to the air in a flying machine.


  3. I have a Rubbermaid type potting cabinet that is not bench size. Last summer I gave it a fresh coat of the gray plastic paint but it needs a good scrubbing this year. I’ve moved it up on the deck so I can give it more attention. I loved the sentence ” I’ve finally crossed over from sentimental to enough already.” It’s hard to part with things that were gifted. Yes, I miss those days too. Photo is priceless.


  4. Good Luck with your projects my love. You’re really so good at these things. I seem to do a better job if it’s for someone else. What’s the line about a mechanic’s car 😀
    What a shame about the potting/serving table, I guess it was due. I’ve had a trolly table taken apart for sanding since we lived in Kevins Condo, LOL, so I’d say you’re really rockin’ the home projects. xK


  5. Pingback: As Projects Go – Gardening Nirvana

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