Tuesday, April 3, 2012

How Re-purposed Jeans (and fleece) saved our Gardens!

My husband is one of the lucky few who gets to wear jeans to work. Being pretty savvy with the sewing machine, I can repair some wear and tear that everyday clothes take. But this particular pair of jeans tore in a way that really was not going to be salvageable. I didn't want to throw them away, so I stashed them on a shelf in the basement until I could think of a good use for them along with almost a yard of black fleece I had left over from a project for Connor.

We went about enjoying the glorious weather of March, amazed at how the daffodils, tulips, creeping phlox and hyacinth were blooming so beautifully, SO early! I don't watch the news, by choice so if there's weather coming, I get notified on my Smartphone. What I was not expecting when the chime went off was a freeze warning! Not a frost advisory, a FREEZE warning. I get notified almost a full day in advance, so my wheels got turning. Of course the potted perennials would come inside, but what about the others! I couldn't exactly dig them all up and bring them in the house.

Then it hit me, the JEANS.

Here's what I did:

the top photo is what this looks like covered

Looked for the most "at risk" of the plants. Many of our plants are protected by other plants, rock beds surrounding them and so forth so they don't get hit by the cold.
This tulip needed a little protection.

I cut the legs into four pieces, tall enough to cover the tulips and others, leaving enough space to fold the top over and clip it with clothespins.

Pretty Easy!

I also recycled some old, cracked transfer pots to cover Steve's exotic hostas...

Here's the results!

waiting to be covered against the winter-like winds

I admit the flower bed looked kinda funny with Pant legs sticking up throughout it, but just look at how happy those flowers looked this morning!!

all wrapped up in denim goodness
For this larger section of plants, I used half of the seat of pants which fit over beautifully. You'll also notice the flipped over coffee container...two delicate hosta eyes were hiding!

The fleece was used in a similar fashion on a larger container with a variegated Hosta that was too heavy to lug into the house...

Good Morning Sunshine 
and Warmer Temperatures

I think they're smiling!

Here's how Steve's favorite Hosta (Sum and Substance) fared the chilly night covered with a simple pot we saved.

What I really like about this is it was quick and easy to do! I can just fold them up and stash them with the garden supplies so the next time the weather may not be plant friendly, we can go ahead and cover them up. Some folks use plastic bags, but I like this better because there's some stiffness to the material and that helped keep the protective covering from touching the plant, decreasing the chance that they'd get frost bitten. There were a few plants that suffered damage from an unexpectedly chilly night which we are hoping will recover and really inspired us to go to such lengths...if you'd seen all the things covered, you'd have laughed!! (our backyard is our escape and we wanted to protect it)

What have you recycled or reused lately?


  1. What a cool garden trick. I have yet to start a real garden, but I want to once we buy a house. I will have to keep this in mind. Thanks for sharing at Wednesday Whatsits.

    1. Thanks so much Julie!! Thank you for hosting.

  2. Very clever! I'll have to pass this on to my mom (she's definitely the gardener in the family). When I was a kid, she would get the giant rolls of bubble wrap to protect the plants from frost. I loved it because I got to pop all of the bubbles afterwards, but this is much more eco-friendly :)

    1. Monica,

      Thank you so much for your sweet comment. I think popping bubble wrap is on most kid's top 5 favorite things to do (I still love to pop them!)

  3. Very smart idea! I need to take notes... I will be planting my first garden this year! Thanks for sharing at oopsey daisy!

    1. Congrats on starting your first Garden! How exciting!! Thanks for Hosting Alison. Looking forward to seeing what oopsey daisy has in store for us.