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Three Outdoor DIY Projects

Outdoor DIY projects are a great way to get some fresh air, be creative, and even improve the value of your home. Here are a few that you can complete in a weekend.

How to make a safe, easy, DIY fire pit in your backyard:

Sometimes there is nothing better than a backyard fire with friends and family. There are plenty of portable options, but it’s extremely easy to build a permanent fixture too! 

1. Mark out your circular space. 4-5 feet is a good diameter. Ensure you are far enough away from any structures or landscaping. 

2. Dig out the grass, and pack down the dirt. You can use one of the trapezoid-shaped bricks you’ll be purchasing for the project. Take the time to level the ground here, it will show up in the finished project. 

3. Place a thick layer of gravel to cover the entire circle. You’re going to want to leave a few inches of gravel that extend past the bricks for a professional look.

4. Using the retaining wall bricks, build your fire pit circle! Three levels is usually a great height. If you have children, you might want to use some fireproof mortar to keep these bricks in place, but it isn’t necessary. 

Enjoy! This is probably the time to upgrade to some Adirondack chairs too. Or, since this is Florida, maybe you just want to enjoy the fire by looking out the window of your air conditioned home. 

How to start a compost in 30 seconds and help the environment:

Most of us have heard of composting, but it can seem like a bit of a daunting task to get started. The truth is, it’s as easy as dropping some eggshells in the backyard. 

Eventually, you may want to get a compost bin, tumbler, or other structure. But composting works just fine as a strategically stacked pile out in the open! 

You may want to start by clearing a 3’ by 3’ space, and putting down wood chips and a layer of soil. This helps aerate from below, increasing effectiveness and reducing the smell. 

After each meal, simply pile on your food waste: coffee grounds, corn stalks, vegetables, weeds, even shredded newspaper. If you do this properly, there should be little to no smell. If critters find it, you could set up a chicken wire fence in mere moments. 

Over a long period of time, these scraps will be decomposed and provide you with extremely fertile soil. Your garden will thank you. 

How to build this self-standing “vertical garden” with shipping pallets: 

I haven’t seen this specific pallet project before, and the dark wood stain looks phenomenal! Here’s how to do it: 

1. First, acquire your two pallets. If the DIY pallet market is still as hot as ever, you may need to take out a second mortgage for this. 

2. Remove enough boards so that your pallet has four levels for planting. You don’t want it too crowded or too spaced out. 

3. Sand and stain. Spend some quality time here, you’ll appreciate the end result. Allow the stain to dry, then add deck sealant for waterproofing. 

4. To make the pockets for the plants, you just need landscaping fabric. Tuck it in between the wood slats and staple it to the sides (zoom in on the picture for a better look). 

5. Add the hinges to finish the self-standing planter, and fill it up with vegetables, herbs, and flowers.  

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