A Filigris Arbor Made from Trash

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

I made this entrance arbor/arch out of things people were throwing away. The top is some ventilated shelving. And the filigris iron posts were taken off a carport my neighbor dismantled. They were black and chipped. I spray painted it all white and it looks great! I think my Rose Silk morning glories will be beautiful on it this summer. Whaddaya think?

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Pinellas Park, FL(Zone 9b)

Hey, you took those posts off my front porch. I was meaning to paint them. LOL
They are almost identical to my front porch posts that I would like to replace. Now I know what to do with them when I do!

Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

It's beautiful! Covered with Morning Glory's! How wonderful! What a great idea!

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

This is the morning glory I have planned for it, Rose Silk, with variegated foliage. The blooms are about 5 or 6 inches in diameter! Isn't it scrumptious?

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Emporia, KS(Zone 5b)

Looks great! What a lovely entrance! Are those morning glories the Japanese variety?

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

I have no idea, Cheryl. Everyone calls them Rose Silk. They may have a japanese origination. I haven't seen a Japanese name associated with them though.

Tulsa, OK(Zone 7a)

do they also call them the chocolate one?.. Arbor is great..


Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

Great looking arbor. How did you seat it in the ground? Concrete?

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

The Chocolate ones don't have the white (picotee) edge. They're just solid pink. I kinda like the white rim framing the flower.

The posts already had concrete around them from when they had been in the ground at my neighbor's house. So we just dug holes and planted them. In our red clay, the ground gets as hard as a brick. The arbor has stood for about 7 months, thru high winds. So I think it will be safe. It's very sturdy and firm in the ground.

I rarely concrete anything because I change my mind with each new design. (anyone else do that??) So I like to be able to move something fairly easy when I get a "wild hair".

Emporia, KS(Zone 5b)

Someone who understands!!!! I drive Doug nuts because I have to sleep on every nail that goes in the wall (okay- I'm exaggerating a bit). I love being able to move things around as needed!

This is the first time I've heard someone speak of clay dirt as though it were a good thing- guess there's a silver lining in every cloud, eh?

Long Beach, CA(Zone 10a)

Great arbor !!! You get an A...!!!!!

in Houston, TX(Zone 9a)

Super arbor. I am looking forward to seeing when the vines cover it.

Pinellas Park, FL(Zone 9b)

Yes the Rose Silk is a Japanese MG. You should see the blue silk!

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Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

Butterfly your MG is breathtaking! I'm really looking forward to seeing your arbor covered with this beauty.

Budgie do these MG's grow well for you in Pinellas Park? Do they grow year round in your environment or do you reseed every year? Full sun, part shade? I believe my zone is probably closer to 9b than 10a (just haven't fixed the boo boo yet) and I'd love to try growing these. So far it seems as if it gets too hot here because I haven't had much success with MG's.

This message was edited Feb 7, 2006 5:46 AM

Pinellas Park, FL(Zone 9b)

I have pretty good luck with them. They do well from around March to Nov/Dec. and sometimes longer if we don't get a cold snap. Mine are not as prolific as others as I have been growing in containers which prohibit their growth. This year I will be trying some directly in the ground to see what difference it makes. I did convert an old aviary 8x16 ft to a sort of greenhouse but with no supplemental heat. Just warm enough to prevent frost/freeze kill for some of the more tropicals and young cuttings/seedlings. It currently has the old wood shingle roof which I will be removing and replacing with either shade cloth or opaque fiberglass panels. The plywood sides are slowly being replace with hardware cloth to allow vines to climb on the outside. During the winter, it will be easy to staple up thick plastic for protection from the cold. I did just start a few Blue Silk and have them out there now so I will see how they do.

Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

Thank you Budgie. I just ebayed 'buy now" both the blue and rose silks and a chocolate. Keeping my fingers crossed for success to grow these :)

Pinellas Park, FL(Zone 9b)

If you don't, I have blue silk I can trade.

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

The Blue Silk is pretty. I think I have a few of those seeds to grow this year too.

I also have a very nice dark silky blue that I had intermingled with the Rose Silk a few years ago. It glows! It has variegated leaves, like Rose Silk, and has huge blooms that start out dark blue and fade to fuscia. I had a better picture of it somewhere, but here it is, windblown, twining around a moonflower datura plant. It didn't produce many seeds, so I'm hoping what I sow this year will do well. I love this one!

I think I'm on a "bright and bold" kick right now. All the colors I have chosen for my gardens are very bright. I need to find a place for pastels. Maybe in a back garden, to brighten things up a bit.

Thanks for the compliment on the arbor. I'd love to make more, so I'm waiting for someone else to throw something else out. LOL

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Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

Thank you Jan.

Butterfly you make me miss my old Tennessee z7a. I could grow so many beautiful things there that I can't grow here.

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

Ahhhhh, but you don't have to contend with a real cold winter. And you can grow all those tropicals I drool over! Wanna swap homes? I have zone envy.

Palm Bay, FL(Zone 9b)

Comparing plants I would trade for 7a any day. Comparing weather ... ain't no way girl! rofl! :)

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7a)

ButterflyChaser -- what a great arbor! I love it, love it. I saw a pile of those curbside in Minneapolis and screeched to a halt, ran up to the house, and knocked (wanting to make sure I could take them). Nobody answered....so I left and am still regretting I didn't just load 'em up. I need to get more brave...I just am always a bit leary that I'd be stealin' 'em :-) I didn't know exactly what I'd make with them, but now that I've seen your arbor, if I ever find any more, I'll be sure and haul them home.

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

I know what you mean, Tradewind, about feeling like a thief. A few years ago, my aunt and I saw a hacked down, dug up crape myrtle on the side of the road. I wanted it. And my aunt said, Stop and let's get it then. I thought maybe I should ask the owners but my aunt said they put out for garbage pickup.

It weighed a ton, still being wrap in clay mud. And it was huge!! Just what was there was as tall as I am! We managed heave it into the van and just barely get the door shut.

Once at home, I planted it. It was a very mature specimen, many years old. When my uncle heard the story of how I got it, he claimed I stole it, that the people may have moved it out to where they wanted to replant it. I hadn't thought of that! We couldn't take it back because my aunt and I couldn't even remember the street we picked it up from.

My uncle said it didn't matter because a tree that size can't be transplanted anyway and it's just going to die. (He's always such a sour puss!) But does this look dead to you? You should see the beautiful dark pink blooms!

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Durham, NC(Zone 7b)

I wouldn't worry about stealing. My mom is always picking up great things on the curb. If it is on the curb it is fair game.

I do have to admit that when I am with her picking up something I get a little embarressed but I never complain in having it!

Hulbert, OK(Zone 7a)

Why don't any of you live close to me???

I thought I was the only one who kept an eye on the trash, and it's
not because I'm cheap, but creative.

I only WISH I had someone to go dumpster diving with, or at least
someone willing to go with me to Tulsa on trash days. Those folks
in Tulsa throw EVERYTHING away.

Up the road, there is a house set to be demolished with the same type
of porch supports. I am hoping, hoping, hoping hubby convinces his boss to
let me have them instead of sending them to the landfill.

Rochester, NY(Zone 6a)

Lots of good socializing goes on in our neighborhood over "curbed" stuff. Once it's on the curb, it's fair game, but always polite to ask if the thing seems valuable. I've rung many a doorbell and made many a friend in the process of swapping stuff.

Have you fellow dumpster divers and salvage lovers heard of the freecycle internet groups?

These are internet-based groups, each with a local focus, that connect people who are throwing things out with people who love salvaging. I bet there's one in Tulsa, for example. Try googling freecycle and the name of your area.

(we are a long way from morning glories here in zone 6 even if it IS sunny outside)

Henderson, NC(Zone 7b)

Wuvie..........We need to get together..I know I would love to go dumpster diving. think I need to get a job tending the dumpster. Only problem with that..I'm afraid My space would be invaded in a very short time with so much TtoTstuff..oh well, I'll keep dreaming.

(Pat) Kennewick, WA(Zone 5b)

We have a free classified online ad here, Craigslist. There is a "free" category and I have seen a number of things listed there. I also ran my own ad saying I would thin and divide perennials. I got SEVERAL big boxes of flowers that way and could have had MANY more if I had wanted LOTS of iris!!

Henderson, NC(Zone 7b)

ButterflyChaser, love your arbour and also love the morning glorys, (every one of them) Did you get them as plants or seeds? And where might I find them. I haven't seen them in garden shops around here.

Kingman, AZ(Zone 7b)

I think it is about time someone posts again on this thread. I loved the trellis and I too have purple and pink morning glories. And did I see a greenhouse on one of these pics? Would like to know more. I scored 17 free 3 by 3 windows on freecycle here in Kingman which I stared six years ago and we now have 1,000 members. We are going to make a greenhouse. I also got some doors and shutters, maybe even a pair of french doors from a friend. So I am hoping we can put it together, It will be 9 by 9 feet with 3 sides of windows and one wall solid for north cold winds. But where I am putting it has lots of morning glories going wild and I may just let them take over they would look nice around something like this wouldn't they?

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(Pat) Kennewick, WA(Zone 5b)

Your greenhouse is WONDERFUL! Truly beautiful and will be stunning when the Morning Glories do their thing on it!

Fort Worth, TX(Zone 8a)

Love your arbor! Would love to see it with MG on it.


Cleveland, OH(Zone 5b)

I never find anything in the trash that I could use; get lots of ideas from all of you though. Hate to go out and buy new material when I should be finding it at the road side.

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

Maiglocke, just keep looking. Watch what friends and family want to throw out. The posts for the arbor I made above were going in my neighbor's dumpster. I rescued them and he looked at me like I was nuts. LOL The top was a piece of ventilated shelving my sister threw out. Sometimes things don't come together right away. I have to "stockpile". (That's actually how I built my house--I stockpiled lumber for a couple of years until we had enough to start it. I worked in construction and my boss made me burn all the lumber leftover on the job sites. I bought a truck and hauled all the lumber home instead and built a house.)

My latest project is creating patios from some old concrete a business broke up and ripped out. My brother had the concrete hauled here to line our ditch for weed control. But many of the pieces are perfect 6 x 6 ft or 4 x 4 ft squares! Don't you know I sweet-talked him out of them? So my next dilemma was how to move them. My dear, sweet brother said, "I'll borrow Eric's bobcat and we'll help you place them." So now I'm just waiting on spring so I can dig out plants here and there to put the concrete blocks. The pieces that are too broken will be used too. I plan to stain them and make them look like flagstone.

Here's a picture of my concrete treasure. The guy hauled in a couple more dumptruck loads after I took this picture. I think there's enough to do all the patios thru my gardens. Of course, anyone who drives by here questions our sanity in allowing all this concrete to be dumped here. Just wait til they see the finished product!

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Henderson, NC(Zone 7b)

ButterflyChaser, you are amazing. Looking forward to seeing before, during and after pics. of your stone work.

(Pat) Kennewick, WA(Zone 5b)

The "flagstone" idea is wonderful. It's the only way I'll ever get the walk way I want! LOL

Baytown, TX(Zone 9a)

Great arbor! I also love the Morning Glories! I agree anything curbside is free game, but if I have a question, I don't hesitate to go up and knock on a door just to confirm. I like to be safe. We have found some great deals that way!

We also know that if we put it to the curb that in this neighborhood someone will take it!

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

ooooh----Butterflychaser, those are some NICE pieces of concrete!
Here's what I did with my broken up sidewalk (along with those of my neighbors, people from the next town over, Craigslist and Freecycle....LOL!) I have these raised beds made of concrete chunks all around my back yard with gravel paths between them.

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Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

Pigeon, what a beautiful garden!! I love how you used broken sidewalks. What a great idea! I want a raised bed or two--one for strawberries. I might follow your example. I just love your succulent garden!

Gilroy (Sunset Z14), CA(Zone 9a)

Thank you---20 years in the head; only 3 in the ground...LOL!
Succulents do well here when a lot of other things fade in the summer, and I love their interesting forms and textures. I'm always looking in neighbors' gardens for individual plants that have handled our temperature extremes well (occasional 18 to occasional 112.)
I've tried growing strawberries, and they're a great commercial crop here, but we have so many snails and slugs and sowbugs and earwigs that thrive here---despite Super Sluggo---that they and the birds ended up with all the fruit. I decided it would be more cost-effective to support my local farmer's market, especially since my DH makes strawberry daquiris that take a pint each!

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