Over the last month on & off, I've been overhauling a neglected willow tunnel at a local school - more on that another day. Part of the deal was that I would take away the willow they couldn't use, so I've ended up with a variety of lengths and sizes that will become basket handles and frames and plant supports and legs for willow animals.
I also had a couple of bundles of shortish, thinnish willow that was no use for basket making - it's quite a brittle variety and wouldn't make a border. Last year I learned how to make runs of low garden fencing and have been wanting to have a go but the willow I've had has all been intended for a specific purpose - until now!
There's a metre square patch of earth in the middle of our patio that used to be a sand pit; when our girls were tiny they would climb right into it and have a fine old time. More recently it has been a tiny vegetable garden but now we have raised beds that are more useful for that, so I decided to empty it out, build a little fence and make a planter.
|Heath Robinson would be proud|
I used a good old stick and string compass to make a circle, then set about preparing the uprights.
|Stripping the willow - surprisingly time consuming!|
Willow roots from its bark and I really don't have space for these to grow so I stripped all the bark from them, plunged them into the soil and will be watching like a hawk for any signs of life.
|Sort of circular. Rustic, that's the word!|
I wove around and around until I ran out of willow, secured the top edge and then had an awful thought ; I was planning to line the planter to protect the willow but what if the rods at the very bottom that are in close contact with the earth decided to root?
|Nearly finished ...|
I decided to sow a bee friendly flower mix - I always grow flowers for cutting but these are a more haphazard jumble. I can't wait to see how they turn out!