Outfit Your Garden Area with a Potting Shed
A potting shed is an outbuilding designated specifically for gardening tasks. That includes, but certainly isn’t limited to, potting and re-potting plants, starting seedlings, hardening off seedlings before planting them outdoors, and tool storage and maintenance. While different gardeners have different gardening needs, there are a few must-have amenities that everybody should be sure to incorporate into their plans.
New or Used?
The truth is just about any structure can be turned into a good potting shed. If you’ve got an old outbuilding on your property, it’s certainly worth exploring if it can be adapted to your gardening needs. In most cases it’s a fairly easy transformation. If you’re starting from scratch, you still have several options. Any common backyard shed of the kit or pre-fabricated variety can easily be modified into a perfect garden shed. And if you like to dream big, you can have your shed custom built (or designed) to meet your every whim and desire.
Windows and Natural Light
One of the main reasons a potting or garden shed is different than that backyard Tuff Shed your neighbor owns is light. Remember, your potting shed isn’t just a storage area. The idea is to build yourself a sheltered place where you can pass hours at a time doing valuable work, whether it’s spring, summer, fall, or even winter. Make sure your shed has several large windows that let in enough light to make it inviting and functional. And if you’re interested in transforming your shed into a greenhouse of sorts, you can incorporate a plexiglass roof or wall-window into the design. Doing so will let in more light, trap in heat, and help create a shed that is at least a three season structure.
Who Says You Can’t Garden in the Dark?
If you can run electricity to your shed, do it. Once you’ve been bit by the gardening bug, you rarely want to quit when the sun sets. Having a large fluorescent fixture hung over your potting bench means you can keep going until the days chores are done, sunlight or not. And when you’re working with delicate seedlings and root balls, you’ll be glad to have the extra light even in the daytime.
The Most Important Place in Any Potting Shed: the Potting Bench
No potting shed is complete without a potting bench. A potting bench is simply a table or large shelf on which you can do your dirty work. They can be free standing or built into the wall of your shed, but there is one requirement: they should be custom built for convenience. Whether you prefer to stand or sit, your potting bench should be built to the perfect height in order to make your work as easy as possible. Measure carefully! A potting bench that is a foot too high or low can make for sore necks and backs and aching shoulders in no time.
Other Potting Shed Suggestions
Besides the basics, there are some other ideas to consider. Make sure you plan for enough storage room when you build your shed, and be realistic about what you plan to store there. Many gardeners choose to store pots, mowers and tools, on top of their seedlings and other pet plant projects. Also, if you’re going custom, think about going the extra mile and installing cold frames, overhangs, outdoor potting benches, and even a few comfortable pieces of furniture like a rocker or cocktail table. It will mean a little extra work, but in the end you’ll have a garden shed that all your gardening friends will envy.