You know the phrase-“Your home is your castle!”. For a gardener, just substitute “Your potting shed is your castle” and you understand what gardeners hold near and dear. A comfortable place that you can store your garden implements, tools, and other horticulture paraphernalia in an attractive and functional manner.
A well-appointed garden shed can be a great way to organize your tools, store gardening supplies and set aside a work space for potting, seedlings, and other garden activities. Here are some important ideas to consider when thinking about your garden shed.
Location— Siting your garden shed is paramount. Conveniently located, yet away from other back yard areas like decks and swimming pools, but close to the main house to make wiring and plumbing easier to accomplish. Because it will be the first stop for your garden work, position the garden shed relatively close and convenient to flower beds and vegetable gardens.
My potting shed is also close to my beehives situated in a meadow, so I am not hauling heavy equipment across the yard. A rain barrel takes care of runoff and I water my nearby veggies with it.
Although usually small, a potting shed can serve as a focal point as well as offering storage for gardening and lawn tools. It’s also a “canvas” for collections.
Easy Access—A ramp at the entryway to allow your wheelbarrow to roll in and out easily is essential. Doorways should be wide enough for your wheelbarrow and other heavy equipment. Adding a double door can open up one side of the shed and make the interior a pleasant place to work on summer days and allow breezes to enter.
Figure out your storage options for potting sheds before building one and you have mastered half the battle, because storage is a big part of the reason you have a potting shed. I don’t know many people who actually “pot” up plants in their potting shed, but for relaxing and storage, the potting shed is at it’s best.
Light — Include windows or skylights to allow natural light inside. Just realize that windows will take up valuable wall space for shelves and hangers for storage. If your shed will be used to store rechargeable garden tools, like edgers and lawnmowers, make sure you have plenty of convenient outlets.
Potting Table— If your gardening includes lots of containers like mine does, a potting table is a good choice. Make sure you’ve included shelves and a handy spot for potting soil so it’s all within reach. My potting table is outside under an overhanging roof to save on space inside. I rather use my potting shed interior for storage than working. Working outside gives me freedom to get messy!
Having electricity and heat are the ultimate for a potting shed, and it really makes it a year round work station.
Hang It Up — Tools like rakes and hoes can be hung from the walls to keep them organized and within reach.
I buy over sized hooks for things like garden hoses and pegboard for small tools.
You could even trace around each tool and label it so they’ll return to the right spot every time, just like Julia Child did in her kitchen. A strong magnetized knife holder can be re-purposed it to hold smaller metal hand tools.
Clutter Begone — Shelves, bins, and baskets can provide a neat way to store all the items that make their way into your garden shed. The most ingenious way I have seen is using an old crib frame for storage.
Use stainless steel commercial shelving for a long-lasting rust resistant storage solution. An old crib, crates, chairs, ladders, and knife racks can be employed to solve storage problems in small areas.
There are many styles of pre-manufactured garden shed kits so try to select one that keeps the look of your house. Or go wild with staining or painting it to stand out.
If you plan to start seedlings, some racks with either natural light or grow lights might be a smart addition. Combining the potting table with the sink can make clean-up and watering a breeze.
Each and every surface of my potting shed is fair game for hanging and decorating. If you are like me, I gather lots of articles which are interesting, but I really don’t use, but I want to display them.
6 Replies to “The Well-Appointed Potting Shed”
I think it would have been a good idea to have read a blog post like this before I built the potting shed. I didn’t really give it any thought. I certainly would have done things differently. A lot bigger for one and that lovely marble sink area. Dispense with the silly cupboards where I can never find anything. I have the barn door but it opens onto my greenhouse so not much room for a wheelbarrow. Maybe I need a complete retrofit building on some of these great ideas.
What a wonderful subject…..the perfect potting shed. Your potting shed is fabulous! Great post.
Thanks Darlene, I feel that mine is a work of lots of love and serendipity!
Makes me drool!
As a shed designer, I hear Jenny’s remorse often; “I wish I had made it bigger”. I encourage my customers to think outside of the box repurposing what they have. Using what you have & think of your walking pattern as if you were modeling a kitchen.I love the crib bed frame idea! Also I encourage using the largest size door because you just never know what you are going to add in there one day. I had a customer who put in her grandmothers wood burning cook stove (this was in a unit built on a cement slab). She said her grand children love to come over & spend time in her shed with her.
Thank you for blogging about such an important feature of the gardening hobby.
Wow, thanks for the feedback. Yes, I wish mine were larger! And I bought a greenhouse from Lapp Structures and should write about that also.