DIY Jam Jar Pallet Planter

When we did our garden makeover last year, I started to pin ideas for the white wall. I wanted to create a wall hanging full of succulents or a pallet with jam jars to hold tea lights and plants.

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We had a pallet left over from building Sophie’s mud kitchen and lots of jam jars leftover from our wedding so I decided to try to create a planter that I had seen on Pinterest. It was part of a photo shoot so there were no details about how they made it so I decided to just go for it. I described the metal parts to the man at B&Q who eventually worked out that I needed hose clips! Then we headed to the garden centre to buy some plants. I chose some ivy, thyme and heather.

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I started by trying out a few arrangements while Craig drilled some holes in the hose pipes. I decided to use three jars for tea lights and tried to arrange these in an irregular triangle to space them out.

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Then we screwed the hose clips to the pallet.

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We tightened the hose clips so that the jars were held in place but they were still loose enough to remove.

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Craig drilled some holes into the wall and added some wall plugs.

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Then we used some small metal corner brackets to hang the pallet onto the wall. We are going to drop that black pipe, which provides the shed with electricity, so that it runs along the ground rather than across the wall.

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While Craig was fixing the pallet to the wall I started to prepare the jars. I washed some gravel to put at the bottom of the jars to help with drainage.

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Then I put the plants into each jar and a little compost if needed.

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I washed the jars and watered the plants before placing them into the hose clips. Then we tightened each of the hose clips to make sure the jars were held securely. If you have a go at making one of these, make sure you don’t over tighten the hose clips as we managed to split a jar in half doing so!

I am really pleased with the finished pallet. It didn’t take too long so we managed to get it completed during Sophie’s nap time. I love the pop of colour from the heather and hope that the ivy will trail around the wooden planks as it grows. I am not sure how well the heather with last but the jars are really easy to take out if I need to replant anything.

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I have saved the lids for the jars with the tea lights so that we can put them on when we are not using them to stop the jars filling with water if it rains.

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Here are a few more photos of the finished planter.

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I can’t wait to sit out in the garden with the festoon lights on, the tea lights lit and the fire pit going. Here’s to the lighter summer evenings that are on their way!

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anna

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Jam Jar Pallet Planter

Gruffalo Spotter Trail – Wyre Forest

Sophie loves the Gruffalo, so we decided to try out the new Gruffalo Spotter trail at the Wyre Forest today. We had read that they advise you to download the Gruffalo Spotter app before you visit as the data signal isn’t great in the forest. So we downloaded it, packed a picnic and headed to the deep dark woods…

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Sophie was keen to get started and she ran to the clues when she saw them. Some of the signs turned and showed close ups of the animal for you to guess which animal you were looking for find next.

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The Forestry Commission sell an activity pack at the visitor centre with a guide, but the trail is so clearly signposted that you can also follow the trail without the pack.

The clues lead to five different footprint markers in the forest. At the first marker, we told Sophie to stand by the tree so we could take her photo and she headed to a nearby tree rather than the marker. You can see how confused she was in the photo below as she couldn’t actually see the tree or the mouse and kept looking at the actual tree!

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When you reach the marker you point your camera at them and the characters appear and move. We didn’t realise until the last marker that they also play sounds. Sophie liked watching the characters appear on the tablet.

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We downloaded the app onto our tablet so that Sophie could see the characters better but the camera isn’t great on it and we ended up with lots of blurry photos. I wish we had downloaded it to our phones as well before we went. She asked to see the photo after we had taken them and thought it was great because it looked like she was stood with the characters.

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The trail leads through the forest and follows and path which lots of people were pushing pushchairs along quite easily. We ventured off the path a few times to explore. There were lots of dens throughout the forest which you could go into.

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Sophie also found a ‘tree’ which she carried around for a while.

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As we walked through the woods, we spotted a sleeping Gruffalo! This was perfect timing as Sophie was beginning to get a little tired but she soon picked up speed as she headed towards it!

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She was really quiet so she didn’t wake him, which was really cute. Then she decided to tickle him with her tree.

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We also found the Gruffalo’s child. Sophie went running towards her and gave her a big cuddle.

The trail was just the right length for Sophie who only asked to be picked up at the very last marker. She did get slower towards the end but the clues kept her engaged and a pack of raisins kept her going until we fetched the picnic from the car!

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The trail is free but you do have to pay for car parking. They sell an activity pack at the cafe or visitor centre for £3 which contains a guide, some stickers and fact cards. We didn’t buy one of these as Sophie wasn’t interested in the pack we bought when we did the Stick Man trail but I saw some families with older children using them and they looked like they were enjoying them.

I would recommend the Gruffalo Trail to families with young children and we definitely plan on going back. If you are planning on going, double check that the trail has been launched at your nearest forest as there are different start dates and remember to download the app before you go.

anna

If you love the Gruffalo, check out the Gruffalo feast we made in our mud kitchen.

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