Introduction: How to Build Your Own Desktop Zen Garden
There are a lot of people that like to have something special on their desk. There are also a lot of people that like gardening, but they simply don't have where to practice it. This little desktop garden will make them all happy.
It's all built from recycled scraps, and easily found stuff.
Let's start building our own desktop zen garden, for those moments that we look away from the papers or the computer.
Step 1: Required Tools and Materials
Here is the list you need to prepare before you start building the zen garden.
- wood scraps - planks and sticks
- some nice rocks you can find, maximum 10cm in size
- small pebbles
- some separating material (plastic, rubber, fiber) - so the pebbles don't mix with the sand
- old newspapers
- some old paint (i found some water based)
- measuring tool (tape or meter)
- right angle
- screwdriver (manual or electric)
- sharp knife or cutter
- hand saw
- metal file
- paint brush or roller
That's about it... Let's start working!
Step 2: Cut the Wood and Start Making the Box
You need to measure the planks you've found.
Mine was 84,5 cm long and 14.5 cm wide, so i cut two pieces of 42 cm each.
The sticks i found were of different lengths, so i cut out two pieces of 29 cm for the box legs and another 4 pieces to make the perimeter of the container.
Use the file to smooth all the edges of the planks and the sticks.
The box legs hold the two planks together side by side, so it's easier to mount the perimeter sticks afterwards.
Attention: Please be careful not to split the wood if you have large screws. It's better if you drill the screw holes and afterwards you screw them in. It's the safe way to do it.
Step 3: Insulation and Paint
I used a fibre cloth to insulate the wood from the sand and pebbles. It's not really necessary, because it's a dry garden, but i like to keep materials separated.
I stapled the material tightly to the inside of the box.
I then started sticking newspaper pieces to the wood with the water based paint. I chose to make this so i can hide the defects on the sticks, the screw holes and the spaces between the wooden parts. If you have good quality wood you don't need to do this.
Personally i like the texture the paper gave the box.
Step 4: Adding the Fillings
After the paint has dried, i stapled some canvas strips that have the width equal to the box edges height height, at about 2 cm from the sides, so i created a space for the pebbles. This is important because you don't want the pebbles to mix with the sand.
After you add the pebbles, you add the sand and you level it with a flat stick.
You choose your bigger stones and position them as you like.
Afterwards you scrape the sand with a screw tip or something sharp from one side to the other with straight lines. This will give the sand the impression of water. Also scrape the perimeter of the rocks with 3-5 lines that emulate water ripples.
There you have it! Your desktop Zen garden :)
Step 5: Finished Zen Garden
Here are some photos with the result of my work.
Finalist in the