Burlap ~ a thrifty container liner
Container planting baskets and hayracks are such lovely garden accents, but have you seen how much the replacement liners cost? Ours had lasted about five years but were finally too tattered to look good or hold the soil in the container any more. Coco-fiber replacement liners were twenty dollars or more apiece! So I turned to burlap to get that same great natural look for a fraction of the price!
For only twenty dollars, I bought a whole bolt of burlap and relined my hayrack planters and wire hanging baskets. New pre-formed liners would have cost over eighty dollars! I lined them with newspaper, added soil and plants and mulched with the old cocoa fiber liners – so nothing was wasted. Plus, I still had lots of burlap for other projects, like making a potting sink skirt!
After two years, I did have to replace the burlap in the hayracks and would recommend putting some plastic down (with a few gaps/holes at the bottom for drainage), then adding some newspaper and topping with soil. If the burlap stays in contact with the damp soil, it breaks down much faster. The hanging baskets are in year three and still look great because I put a plastic pot of flowers in the basket on top the burlap instead.
So, now you can reline wire planting containers much more cheaply and still have that great natural look!
Here are some more container garden ideas from Our Fairfield Home and Garden!
They look so nice Barb..I love those big long planters on your deck..
They are big, Nancy! Four feet long and four of them! I fill them with annuals and some spider plant babies for filler!
I really like the idea of using burlap.. thanks for sharing..I have several planters that the coco fiber needs to be replaced..
Nice to hear from you, Jamala! This works very well and lasts even longer if the burlap is not directly in contact with the wet soil in the planter. So, if you have a pot or insert, the burlap will last a long time!
I love this idea, such a good way to save. Do you double up on the burlap lining? Also, does the burlap stay firm up when you fill it with soil?
Thank you for sharing and this is something I’d like to try.
Thanks for writing, Anna! I did not double the burlap but did fold over the edges to make it look neater at the tops of the containers. Another reader suggested lining with disposable baby diapers to retain moisture instead of newspaper, and that might be something to try, too! Because you have put something else in on top (newspaper, plastic or diaper), the burlap stays in place pretty well, but do hold the top of it as you put in the soil. If you have a plastic pot, you can just pop it in!
Thanks Barb for this wonderful idea. I am now retired and definitely will have more time being creative in my gardens.
Retirement is a wonderful thing, JoAnn! I have been retired since last June and have time now to get into all sorts of trouble!
You can also ask your local nursery if they have burlap squares. It comes in naturL (tan) and treated which is usually olive green. The compound is copper based and not toxic to plants but will double the service life of natural. Nursery. UrlP also is available in a heavy weight (10 oz) weave which lasts even longer.
Great suggestion, Mike! These squares do last quite a while!My hayracks are four feet long so I had to find another alternative.