Small Space Gardening: Coffee Can Vertical Garden DIY

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden

Who else has been soaking up the sun every chance they get? I know I’ve been spending an awful lot of time on my new outdoor teak furniture, enjoying the rays.
This time of year means extra time spent outside and for us that includes nurturing our backyard edible garden. When I started planning gardening ideas for the blog this Summer there was a lot of interest in small space ideas from readers. I had some coffee cans we had been saving for I- don’t- know- what and when I started looking up small space gardening ideas to include in this Gardening Planner and I knew they would be perfect for a small- space garden project. Whether you have a small yard, a patio/ deck, or even just a few planters, you don’t need a lot of space to indulge your green thumb. This way you have more room for an outdoor living space with the addition of something like a teak garden bench to relax in your garden on the days the weather is screaming to be taken advantage of.

For a small garden space, square- foot gardening is a great way to maximize space and crop yield (we love our Seeding Square for this), but what if you’ve got little/ no room for planters or more vertical space than horizontal? No problem. Constructing a vertical garden is a great option which makes the most of wall space, railings, and fences by using them as a canvas for things like wall climbing plants or hanging baskets. If you don’t have any fencing, you can have some installed by this fence company in Simi Valley who offer really affordable prices, and its well worth it for the extra decorative space it gives to a small garden. For example, this is great for a herb garden, but you don’t have to restrict yourself- limited garden space is just an excuse to get a little creative and this DIY is easily adaptable for the space and materials you have on hand. There are a lot of resources out there for you to take advantage of for your DIY garden project, such as this Lowes Gift Card which could help you get what you need to make sure your project is a success and have your garden looking amazing. Tip: to make the most of the space you have, plant some peas or beans in a planter at the base of the frame, hang some tomatoes or potatoes upside down from the top, and reserve the space in the middle for plants like salad greens, lettuce, and other similar edibles.


– wooden frame (hello thrift store!)

-spray paint

-coffee cans, labels removed

-large S hooks

-hammer + large nail

-garden twine

-plants/ seeds of choice

-large pebbles

-organic potting soil

-chicken wire + staple gun (optional)

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden supplies


  1. Start by giving the frame(s) you’re going to use 2 coats of paint, allowing to dry between coats.
  2. Using a hammer and nail, puncture each of the coffee cans about 1″ from the top (or make the hole higher if using a small S hook. Hang the S hook through the hole or push some twine through for hanging.

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial

Tip: If you prefer, you can simply hang the coffee cans right off of your deck railing or fence.

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial

3. Add some large pebbles/ river rock to the bottom of each can for drainage. Fill the cans with soil along with the plants/ seeds you want to grow until full.

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden tutorial

4. Optional step: staple chicken wire to the back of the frame if you want to have the option to hang containers over the whole surface area within the frame.

5. Lean the frame against or attach it to your vertical space (wall, fence, railing, etc) and hang the coffee cans as desired. Water the plants as needed.

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden
DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden

Like this idea? Pin it!

DIY upcycled coffee can vertical garden

Looking for more gardening ideas? Check out the blog’s Patio + Garden page for a list of all the posts in this category.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links

OHP Gardening Series: Printable Gardening Planner

After what feels like a few false starts, the sun and warmer weather seem to be here to stay. We’ve been working hard getting the garden planted over the past month or so- it was definitely a later start than usual- and we’re starting to enjoy the results as the first batch of plants are almost ready to pick. We’ve got spinach ready to eat with peas and lettuce coming up quick. Even with the late start it’s been a great kick off to the gardening season and since it’s something many enjoy or want to get into, I’ve put together a printable Gardening Planner full of info and tips, plus printable labels and something for the kids.

I tried to include as much as I could on the topic of edible gardening without it turning into a novel, and included ideas for small space gardening, kid- friendly ideas, and plants that grow well indoors/ in the shade for those with limited (or no) outdoor gardening space. I tried to make it as simple and user- friendly as possible. Simply print it off and use it throughout the growing season to help you plan and stay organized. I’ve included a Garden Planning Grid and Legend to help you map out your garden space and make the most of the area you have to work with (if you follow the blog on Instagram you’ll have seen me share about Seeding Square, a great tool to help maximize growing space). You’ll also find suggestions for vertical and container gardening, natural pest control, and companion planting suggestions.

Phew! I hope I’ve covered some good ground with this planner and hope it helps you with your gardening plans for the season ahead. See below for contents, photos of some of the pages, and links to some of the companies whose products we’re using as well as gardening books I’ve included in the Resources section of the Planner. Simply click to download and print. If you want this planner to last a while, pick up a binder or folder and slip the pages into clear plastic page protectors, or reprint pages as needed.

What’s inside:

  • Planting Calendar– Print a few of these pages for the months you seed/ grow/ harvest/ re- plant in
  • Crop Planning– Plant variety, indoor/ outdoor planting dates, estimated harvest dates, and notes
  • Planning Grid– Map out your gardening space and use as a reference for planting. Print as many of these as you need for multiple garden spaces and if you plan to re- plant with different crops in the same space throughout the season
  • Planning Legend– Use with the Planning Grid to help you plan your gardening space(s)
  • Natural Pest Control– Try these methods to help reduce pests without chemicals. Sometimes using chemicals is necessary, but utilising natural products can work just as well; have plenty of methods for you to try, chemical and natural, on how to deal with the pesky pests invading your home. Natural pest control methods are always better, but if you ever suffer from a full blown pest infestation, your only option may be professional help. You may want to check out something like pest control services Carlisle if you are ever in need of a professional exterminator.
  • Companion Planting– Suggestions for which fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers grow well together and help reduce pests
  • Kid- Friendly Ideas– Suggestions for easy- to- grow edible plants that kids will enjoy helping with
  • Tips– Ideas for small space and container gardens, vertical gardening, plants that grow well in the shade, and suggestions for plants that you can grow indoors
  • Notes– Print as many of these pages as needed to make additional notes
  • Printables– Includes plant labels, seed labels, and a kids garden sign. Print as many as you like to use and get your kids involved by having them colour and cut out their own sign for the garden
  • Resources– Some books I recommend for further reading (I’ve included links at the end of this post if you want to check them out)

Download and print your copy of the OHP Garden Planner below!

OHP Garden Planner


I’ve included links to websites of companies whose products we’re using this year (keep an eye out for more gardening content featuring them throughout the Summer) and the books I have enjoyed reading and turn to for advice with our own garden. All of the books are available on Amazon and are great to have on hand as reference. If you were interested in talking to professionals about how they approach a garden, consult with georgia lawn care cities I hear do a great job.

OHP Gardening Series Partners

Roma Boots

Westcoast Seeds

Seeding Square

Raincoast Books


From Seed to Table, A Practical Guide to Eating and Growing Green– By Janette Haase, Insomniac Press

Tiny Garden, Huge Harvest*- By Caleb Warnock, Familius

DIY Garden Projects, Easy Activities and Edible Gardening and Backyard Fun*- By Mat Pember & Dillon Seitchik- Reardon, Hardie Grant Books

Herbs + Flowers*- By Pip McCormac, Quadrille

*See more info on these books plus two gardening books for kids in this post.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links

Backyard Gardening: 5 Books for the Green Thumb Family

We’re heading into gardening season on the West Coast and I’m already looking forward to the warm months to come spent outside digging in the dirt as well as spending time in somewhere similar to these utility sheds just enjoying the summer. For the past few years we’ve planted edible gardens and last year was the first full season of us planting our two raised box gardens full; everything from kale to peas. Will and I both enjoy gardening and the output from all our hard work, and we’ve enjoyed teaching Ari about gardening and plants the past two Summers. Gardening is definitely a labour of love, but you can enjoy it on as big or as small of a scale as you like. I joke that our back yard is my favourite room of the house in Spring and Summer and soaking up the Vitamin D in our backyard is one of my favourite ways to unwind. We have big plans this year which I can’t wait to share with you, the biggest task we have to getting the Tree Company Smyrna, GA to take out one of the big, old trees to the back of our garden.

With Ari turning four this year, we’re looking forward to her helping even more in the garden, even if it’s only simple tasks, it’s something she loves and a great opportunity to teach her about growing food and nature. Our goal is to grow organic food and make the most of homegrown eats through the Spring and Summer, while also teaching our kids a love and appreciation for the outdoors and letting them be a part of the process. You don’t need a lot of space to enjoy gardening- pots, containers, and vertical gardens are all great small- space options- and there are methods to make the most of even small garden plots. Even if gardening isn’t a passion- maybe it’s something you just want to dapple in- or want to teach your kids about how plants grow, I thought I’d round- up some reading material to kickstart gardening season.

I’m sharing 5 books below to help build your gardening library, including a few titles for kids, so everyone in the family can enjoy their time digging in the dirt. All titles available from Raincoast Books.

What Will Grow?

This book for kids teaches about a variety of different seeds and what they grow into- everything from peas and tomatoes to oak trees and sunflowers. It’s perfect to teach kids about how plants grow from seeds and that they can transform into many things: flowers, trees, fruits, or vegetables. A great intro to gardening for young readers that includes info about seed growth and simple tips to start your own garden, plus four pull- out pages that kids will love. The pages are full of bright illustrations with planting tips for all of the seeds featured at the back of the book, along with the stages of growth from seed to full- grown plant.

By Jennifer Ward, illustrated by Susie Ghahremani

Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt

What happens in the dirt that we don’t see? Lots of things! This kids’ book shows the hidden world of nature below the garden surface plus all the activity that happens above ground through the four seasons. Everything from worms and other bugs, to the animals and creatures that call the garden home. This a great book to teach kids about all of the critters that are a part of the garden world throughout the year and shows how it changes through the seasons- from prepping the garden for planting, to the final harvest of the year. At the end of the book is a list of suggested further reading for little gardeners along with an ‘about the animals’ section to teach kids about the creatures featured throughout the book.

By Kate Messner, illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal

The Little Veggie Patch Co. DIY Garden Projects

This book is loaded with ideas for garden projects, ranging from simple ideas for kids to all- out garden DIYs. Whether you’re looking for garden space ideas- want to build your own vertical garden, repurpose items to help plants grow, or want to attract garden- friendly bugs to your yard?- or get your kids involved, this book has over 250 pages loaded with ideas, all accompanied by easy to follow step- by- step instructions and photos to help you complete your project. I’ve already got a few bookmarked to try with the kids and I’ve seen a few DIYs I’d like to try making for our box gardens as well. I’ve just bought them a kids wagon as well as a few other supplies so we can start moving the garden around and making some focal points. I like that this book can help you from start to finish of setting up and growing a garden, plus has simple ideas to get the kids involved.

By Mat Pember and Dillon Seitchik- Reardon

Tiny Garden, Huge Harvest

Don’t have a lot of room but still want to grow some yummy things with your green thumb? This book provides tips for small plot and container gardening with step- by- step instructions for designing, planting, and harvesting. It shows that you don’t need a lot of space, you just need to make the most of it. It includes tips for different garden options- vertical, tiered, pot/ container gardening with vermifire soil, as well as what kind of garden you’re thinking of: do you want to be able to harvest and eat what you grow, or simply enjoy the act of gardening? It also has information about gardening techniques and what to do with the food you grow, including garden planning, four- season gardening, succession planting, and how to preserve harvested edibles. At the back of the book is a handy index with information on a variety of edible varieties including some popular herbs. Added bonus: this is a little book loaded with info- it’s about the size of a postcard, making it perfect to tuck into your bag when you head to store to buy gardening supplies and want a quick reference guide.

By Caleb Warnock

Herbs + Flowers

Maybe something on a simpler scale is what you’re looking for? This little book is a great guide for growing more than 32 kinds of herbs and edible flowers (have you seen how pretty a salad looks garnished with fresh flowers?) and has beautiful illustrations of all the plants featured. Each variety is outlined with key information including how it tastes, when to plant and pick, and serving suggestions (ie fresh dill is nice eaten raw or cooked and pairs well with cucumber, lime, lemon, and red peppers, among other tasty combinations). It also includes substitution suggestions, so you can try out different options if a certain plant doesn’t grow well for you (I’ve tried growing basil from a seed unsuccessfully, so have opted to buy a small plant in the past, but other ideas according to the book include mint, lemon balm, and oregano). Another great reference book to tuck into your bag to take to the store when you stock up, and a simple/ enjoyable read no matter what your skill/ expertise level.

By Pip McCormac, illustrated by Louise O’Reilly

All of the books listed above are available through Raincoast Books.

Find them online on and Indigo.

Website: | Instagram: @raincoastbooks | Facebook: Raincoast Books | Twitter: @raincoastbooks

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links

Gift Guide: 5 Mother’s Day Ideas

With Mother’s Day just under a week away, it’s time to make sure that you show your love and appreciation for that special lady- or if you are the special lady, it’s time to pass on some hints. 😉

Whether it’s some pampering such as this mommy makeover denver, a piece of jewellery, or a handmade gift from the heart, we’ve got a few suggestions from some local Vancouver companies to help you- or those giving to you!- find the perfect gift to show some Motherly love.

1. Pampered Mama

Who doesn’t love a little pampering? A massage? Facial? Mani pedi? Give Mom some well deserved TLC with a trip to the spa for some R&R. Or better yet, have the spa come to her! There are a variety of spas on the go that set up and bring the service wherever you want. Check out Ultimate Mobile Spa for a great Vancouver- based option. Spoil Mom with their Ultimate Relaxation Package (includes a manicure, pedicure, and choice of 30 minute massage or mini facial) for $100 or enjoy a Mother- Daughter Pampering Package (includes a manicure & pedicure each) for $120. Because what Mom doesn’t deserve a little TLC?

2. Relaxed Mama

Sometimes the simplest pleasures are the most appreciated when you’re a busy Mom. A cup of tea- that’s still hot!– is sometimes all it takes to help melt stress away. Why not give a gift that will bring her enjoyment for months to come? Tea Sparrow is a monthly tea subscription service that sends assorted premium teas right to your door. Each tea box includes a black tea, a green tea, a roobios tea, and a herbal tea and shipping is included. Choose from a one month treat for $25, 3 months for $22/ month or send Mom love for 6 months for $20/ month. Perfect for the tea enthusiast- or for the Mom who’s hard to buy for. (For more info about Tea Sparrow, check out our feature post on them & their website). Click here & enter password teas to receive 60% the first month when you sign up for a subscription. Another idea to help relax your mom on this special day is looking at the nail services from Beauty Booker – the different treatments they offer will definitely help relax your mom and make her feel extremely special.

3. Blinged Mama

I don’t know a Mom- or any lady for that matter- who doesn’t love jewellery. Jewellery is a popular gift, according to Jacobs The Jeweller. Avoid the mass produced items on display at the mall and select a unique piece that’s as special as the lady receiving it. You could look online for jewellers like those on the haruni site to find a one of a kind piece that’s sure to make her go “wow”, or look for something that is perhaps a little more economical. You could even go out and find some refreshing pieces in gold and silver tones by JQ Vancouver; these designs are the perfect balance between classic & contemporary. And if you ask nicely, owner Chelsey Andrews will even create a custom piece for you. For some great jewellery tips, check out our post with JQ Vancouver. Purchase on the JQ Vancouver Etsy page. Enter promo code Mom20 to receive 20% off your purchases through the month of May!

4. Trendy Mama

If the Mom you’re buying for is a lover of clothes, why not add to her apparel collection? Make your gift one that she’ll bring out as her go- to favourite and think of you when she wears it. A great Vancouver line is Lomolicious (Chinese for yummy mummy!) with it’s versatile designs that combine comfort and style. The designers use real Mom models for their clothes, which they hope will become stylish wardrobe staples along side the LBD. I love their asymmetric off the shoulder jersey tops and linen jersey wrap shawl capes. All pieces are designed & created locally and made in limited quantities, so if you see something you like, make sure you snap it up before it’s gone. Exclusive for TPB readers: Enter promo code 1HAPPYMOM to receive 20% off your purchase!

5. DIY Mama

If it’s a handmade gift you’re after, why not create something to be enjoyed every day or a project you can do together? Whether it’s a DIY hanging basket for the gardening enthusiast, or a refinished piece of furniture for the thrift store bargain hunter, add your personal touch with an OAK (One of A Kind) present. Part of the gift can be finding the perfect project, working on it together, and enjoying the finished product; or simply giving Mom something you took the time to make just for her will mean so much. I don’t think you can ever go wrong with something heartfelt & handmade.
I hope you find your Mom something as special as she is- and if you’re Mom looking for some hints, I hope these gift ideas give you some suggestions! Have a WONDERFUL, well- deserved Mother’s Day! A big thank you to the above businesses for providing some Motherly love to TPB readers!

oxox TPB

Image Sources:
Ultimate Mobile Spa; Katherine Petrunia; The Pampered Baby; JQ Vancouver; Lomolicious; Katherine Petrunia, The Pampered Baby

May posts sponsored by Noah’s Ark Hypnotherapy

Spring DIY: Easy Hanging Baskets

It’s that time of year to get your garden ready for Spring. Even if you’re not an avid gardener- or just don’t have the coveted green thumb!- you can add visual interest to your deck or patio with hanging baskets. You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to make them, and it’s a fun DIY project to do with the kids to get them outside & learn about gardening. Have them help pick out the plants & baskets to encourage their interest- when the baskets are finished they’ll have a sense of pride from helping and the satisfaction of watching them grow. Involve them in watering and maintaining them- it will get them out in the fresh air and teach them responsibility; when they’ve participated in the process they’ll be more interested and enthusiastic to help. (These also make great Mother’s Day gifts for the Grandmas or for your hubby to make with the kids for you!)

Hanging baskets 
5 plants per basket 
(Tip: pick something tall to plant in the middle; pick 1-2 vines & trailing plants & 1- 2 low- lying plants for visual interest. Ask someone at your local garden centre for suggestions)
Watering can & water
Approximate cost for 2 hanging baskets: $25- 30

1. Select your baskets & plants
The larger your baskets the more plants you will need. I used moss- lined wire baskets with the following plants:
– 1 spiky grass (tallest plant, in centre of basket)
– 2 pansies per basket in opposite corners (low- lying plant)
– 1 petunia per basket (low- lying/ trailing)
– 1 vine per basket

2. Fill your baskets approx. 1/3- 1/2 full with soil, distributing evenly.
3. Place the plants in the baskets where you would like them arranged & adjust until your satisfied with their placement; remove your plants from their pots & loosen the dirt around their roots
4. Add enough soil to fill up to the base of the plants; press the plants into the soil to make sure they won’t shift
5. Hang your baskets & water
For maintenance, make sure you water the baskets 1-2 times per day during the Summer in the morning and/ or evening (the leaves can get burnt if you water them in the scorching heat); remove dead foliage & flowers as needed.

I’ll try and add some photos when they’ve grown to show their progress.

April posts sponsored by Gary Gallant Travel

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