DIY Rock Bucket

If you have rich, black dirt on your property you’re a lucky person. We’re not so lucky in the main place that we plant. A lot of our property has soil with a high clay content and is filled with rocks–big and small. Today’s blog post is going to show you how to make a DIY Rock Bucket.

Many years ago I read in a Martha Stewart Living magazine that when Martha gardens she carries a small bucket with her to put rocks in as she finds them. That had always stuck with me so when I started gardening I adopted this habit.

First I tried a kid’s sand bucket. This would probably work if you had a small garden and weren’t constantly digging up random trash from years of people living and losing things. Also it was easy to knock over and if you left it out in the rain it became a breeding ground for mosquitos.

Old Bucket

When we moved to the farm there was this old five gallon bucket that someone had drilled holes in all over the sides and bottom (you can see it in the picture above). I assume it was used for minnows, but I really have no idea. It was the perfect rock bucket. I could drag it around to whichever garden I was working in and fill it with rocks and other hard debris. Then, the best part, when it rained, all the dirt would wash off leaving you a bucket of rocks to use as gravel.

Sometime over the winter the bucket got lost or tossed out. My raised beds were starting to look like stone walls with the stacks of rocks on their edges so it was time to make a new bucket.

You could use any size bucket, used or new. The big box hardware stores sell five gallon buckets at very reasonable prices. Last year I had tried to get the chickens to use chicken nipples attached to a five gallon bucket (here’s a link if you don’t know what they are), but that didn’t work out because of our hard water. However, that meant I had an extra bucket laying around.

Drill with 3/8" bit

I put a ⅜” drill bit in the cordless drill then started drilling holes in a somewhat organized pattern. This does not to be exact by any means, your goal is to have holes small enough to keep the rocks in and big enough to let water and dirt out.

Start drilling holes in bottom of bucket

Finished holes in bottom of bucket

Drill holes in sides of bucket

How the holes look from the inside

DIY Rock Bucket

That’s it! You’re done! This project took no more than a half an hour and makes a big difference in your garden. Let me know if you try it!

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