Saturday, August 14, 2010

Bike tire raised garden bed

Earlier this week I got a twitter suggestion from P. Allen Smith to do a second sowing of sunflowers. I haven't grown a thing all summer other than houseplants. Anyhoo, I was inspired, but was stumped on location. Then I got an idea for an experiment.

If you ride bikes, chances are, you have a lot of old bike tires lying around like we do. I decided to use a couple to make a small, raised garden bed.

I picked a sunny spot in the backyard, south of the crape myrtle tree. I used a garden spade to loosen up the ground a bit.

I used garden staples to secure the bottom tire and used a regular stapler to connect the bottom tire to the top tire. (If I had to do it again, I would like to come up with a better way to sew the two tires together - maybe twine and an upholstery needle.)

Then I filled it with garden soil making sure to get into the edges of the tire. For the two 29'er mountain bike tires, I used between 1 and 2 cubic feet of soil.

Then I planted a dwarf species (70 days to bloom).

Although not pictured, I decided to put some landscaping rocks around the bed for support until I see what happens when it rains.

I have no idea if this will work. If it does, I'll redo in the spring or make changes and try again.


  1. I grow sunflowers every year but the birds ate all of the seeds... three times. If that happens try germinating indoors first. And when you grow them you can recycle the seeds each year by storing them in the fridge.

  2. Yeah, I'm a little worried about that, but I do have a cat that eats a bird (and a squirrel) now and then.

  3. love the use of the bike tire! That would look great in my yard, might have to give it a go...