Posts tagged "herbs"

Vertical Herb Garden: Living, Spinning Spice Rack

Shirley Bovshow's "Living Spice Rack" that spins and is portable.

You can make a vertical herb garden, a "living spice rack" that spins, using a repurposed tomato cage!

Vertical gardens are very popular these days because it allows you to free up your floor space without sacrificing space for gardening.

One of my favorite pasttimes is coming up with ideas to repurpose materials in the garden that most gardeners already have.

This is the case with my "Living Spice Rack" design.


Materials For Shirley Bovshow's Living Spice Rack

I imagined a lightweight, portable, and affordable vertical garden system to grow lots of herbs indoors, during the winter, or outdoors yearlong in mild climate areas.


1. Tomato Support Cages

I had to look no further than my metal tomato cage which was on it's way to the garden shed once tomato season was over.



The tomato cage with its gridlike design and sturdy composition is the perfect structure to hold a number of metal hanging baskets filled with herbs!



If you prefer wood, you can use an inexpensive wood vegetable support trellis like this one- cost $6


2. Casters and Plant Dollies

Assortment of Casters-plant-dollies-wood-plastic-edenmakersblog

Casters and plant dollies, ($15 +) are the centerpiece of the living spice rack, enabling you to spin and move the rack as needed!



Buy some metal planting baskets and cocoa liner and fill them with your favorite herbs before attaching to the tomato cage with gardening tape.

The baskets should wedge into the tomato cage openings, mine are snug.

Make sure to select the right size metal planter by checking to see that it isn't too large or small for the opening.

That's it!


Watch Video: "Vertical Herb Garden That Spins and Functions Like a "Living Spice Rack!"

Watch the videos of the Living Spice Rack that I did for my "Way to Grow" show on Digs channel and take a look at the segment I did for the Home & Family Show on

the Hallmark channel recently!



  • If using indoors, make sure to place a saucer underneath the large, main planter to catch draining water.
  • Water your living spice rack starting at the top so that the overflow water will drain onto the planters underneath it.
  • Select a large container to hold the tomato cage. It should be wide so that the rack is not top heavy and topples.
  • Spin your herb rack every few days for even sunlight exposure.
  • Enjoy!



Winter Herbs and Greens for Your Living Spice Rack

  • Parsley
  • Cilantro
  • Chives
  • Sage
  • Oregano
  • Thyme
  • Arugula
  • Radicchio
  • Lettuce varieties
  • Kale
  • Swiss Chard
  • Rosemary

Front Yard Vegetable Garden Makeover!

edible front yard in knot garden style

One of my favorite garden television makeovers was a front yard vegetable and herb garden that Michael Glassman and I designed for our show, "Garden Police," (Discovery Home Channel).


continue reading..

Holiday Gift Ideas From the Garden

Mixed lettuce bouquet makes a great hostess gift!

There are many holiday gift ideas waiting for you right outside your door in the garden!


Use Plants and Recycled Materials!

It's another "recession Christmas" for most people but I'm not going to let this financial challenge get in the way of my gift giving this holiday season!

So, get ready my friends for your "living gifts" from the garden.


Here are seven of my favorite projects and crafts that I've culled from past Eden Maker blog posts to inspire you!



1. Mixed Lettuce Bouquet (or other seasonal vegetable)


Mixed lettuce bouquet makes a great hostess gift!


I put together this mixed lettuce bouquet from my garden as an unconventional hostess gift.

I picked the lettuce thirty minutes before leaving the house to preserve as much freshness as possible.

The  lettuce leaves were washed and rolled in a moistened paper towel and aluminum foil.

Read the rest of the post: "Unconventional Hostess Gift: Mixed Lettuce Bouquet



2. Palm Frond Recycled as a Succulent Planter!




Is the wind blowing palm fronds onto your street?

Don't be so fast to throw away this debris.

I was impressed with some clever succulent planters that were created by a group of  Los Angeles Arboretum volunteers using re purposed natural materials like palm fronds and hollowed tree stumps..

Read the rest of the post  "Succulent Planters: Would You Believe Palm Fronds?


3. "Living Tapestry Pillow"

This succulent pillow is a  Shirley original, as far as I know, (a vision came to me for it while watching Citizen Kane ).

Inspiration comes from the most unlikely places!


I created the "Living Succulent Tapestry Pillow"  for my  presentation at the "Epcot International Flower and Garden Show" in Disney World last year.

Read the rest of the post  "Living Tapestry Pillow"



4. Miniature Rose Garden in a Container!


What do you do with those cute miniature roses that you can buy at the supermarket, big box store or discount outlet?

Take them out of their pots and make them the star of a container miniature rose garden!

Read the rest of the post "Create a Miniature Rose Garden in a Container!"



5. Hanging Edible Container Garden

This hanging, edible container garden makes a great gift.

Re-purpose kitchen items that can handle water as containers for planting herbs, like this onion hanger  from the "Dollar Store."

Read the rest of the post "Edible Gardening Containers from the Dollar Store" for more ideas like this.




6. "Antique Dresser Re-purposed as a Potting Table!"

Repurpose an antique dresser as a potting table!



Upcycle an antique dresser as a potting table!

Are you handy with a paint brush?

Here's an idea from one of my garden makeover segments on HGTV.

An antique dresser can make a great potting table.

Read the rest of the post "Garden Furniture as Art!" for a few other clever  gift ideas for the DIY'er to make.



7. "Artistic" Container Garden

Plants are inexpensive and mixed with "garden sculptures" or re-purposed decor, they can be transformed into an artistic, one-of-a-kind gift!

Read the rest of the post "Container Gardens That Catch the Eye!" for more ideas like this.


I hope some of these ideas provide a stimulus for your own creative gifts from the garden!

Thanks for reading and I invite you to watch my weekly, online Garden TV talk show, "Garden World Report."

The latest Garden World Report Show is called, "Garden Center Holiday Tour" and features tours of garden centers all over the country decked out for the holidays and more!

Edible Gardening Containers From Dollar Store!

onion rack planter from Dollar Tree store


My presentation on the “Beautiful Edible Garden” at  Epcot’s International Flower and Garden Festival was a hit last week in Florida!

After a detailed 45-minute presentation, my audiences stuck around for another 30 minutes or so to take photos of the  demonstration gardens.





What a compliment.


Shirley-at-Epcot giving away Baker Heirloom seeds

Shirley giving away Baker Heirloom Seeds


Some of the biggest hits were edible garden containers that we found at the local dollar store and repurposed as planters!


Take a look.


$1 Garden Containers!

onion rack planter from Dollar Tree store

<p>Hanging onion basket repurposed as edible garden container!</p>

 This is an onion rack repurposed as a hanging herb planter!  $1


Another hanging delight, fresh herbs are planted in a  $1 wreath frame.

Packed in moss and lightweight soil, the wreath maintains a neat appearance through occasional herb harvesting.

Make sure you hang this one where the sun DOES shine!


Kitchen colander $1 already has drain holes!


I’m sure you can find an unused colander in your kitchen cabinet or at the dollar store to transform into a countertop salad garden!

Just add soil and plants.

The drainage is built in!




This “Strawberry Tower” from the Bruce Post Company is one of my favorite finds for the garden!

The Strawberry Tower is made of rot-resistant western red cedar wood, is pyramid shaped with four planting sides, and comes in four and six foot tall models.

I like it because it offers excellent drainage for the berries, makes good use of vertical space and is a gorgeous addition to the garden or patio!


 Pre-seeded planting mats by Ambers Garden


Do you want a delicious edible garden but hate to dig or are short on time?

Would you believe that within this pre-seeded  mesh is a future salad garden?


“Amber’s Garden” is the brainchild of Connie Henderson and is available at your local garden center.

Check out what happens when you put this mesh on prepared soil and add water.




Five weeks later…a delicious and mixed “salad garden!”

I tasted these greens and can attest that Amber’s Garden salad is great-tasting and an option for the harried gardener or anyone with limited physical abilities.

No digging and no kidding!


Amber’s also offers a “Salsa Garden,” as well as an herb garden, pumpkin, gourd and other collections.



Watch the interview with Amber’s Garden creator, Connie Henderson.

I love this product so much, I HAD to present it at Epcot!




Once I had the audience fired up about creating their own edible edens, I sent them home with a Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company newspaper and free seeds!

Baker Creek graciously supplied enough heirloom seed packets for me to give away to all my attendees.

Thanks Baker Creek!




You should have been there.

Maybe next year!

Gardening and Eating: Two of Life’s Greatest Diversions!

Persian cucumbers, green onions and beets from Shirley Bovshow’s garden.

I’m not growing my own vegetables to save money, (though its a nice benefit). I’m not growing my own vegetables because I fear the quality of food available in the supermarket is substandard, ( though I realize not all of it is up to my healthful standards). I’m not growing my own vegetables to mitigate the impact of irresponsible agricultural practices on the land, ( though I am mindful of it and do my best to be a good steward of nature). I’m gardening and growing my own vegetables, fruits and herbs because it brings an order, purpose and joyful meaning to my life! Did I mention it was fun too?

Gardening and growing food for my family gives me something to do when I’m not occupied with personal and professional commitments. Gardening is my diversion of choice because it slows me down and engages my body, mind and spirit as I partner with nature to create beauty and fresh food. Just passing my vegetable garden and taking a whiff of the onions, curry, tomatoes, basil and cilantro fills my mind with all kinds of experimental recipe combinations. Cooking is even more enjoyable when I have a harvest-full of ingredients at my fingertips to choose from.

I created my  garden as an eaters paradise. Besides the dedicated raised kitchen garden, my whole yard is an edible landscape! Tucked into garden beds are potted fruit trees, edible hedges, delicious focal points and garden art.

I recognize that gardening and growing one’s own food can be an environmentally responsible lifestyle that people choose in order to counteract rampant consumerism. I admire these people. I’m not sure I would derive as much pleasure from gardening and growing my own food though if I had to do it out of economic necessity or to make a political point. I want my garden to be pure and simple, a sanctuary for my family and all who gather under the shade of my pepper tree to commune with nature and enjoy its delicious bounty.