Sunday, October 9, 2011

Spontaneous Construction

Yesterday our team (Butterfly Properties- our garden coaching business) spent the day participating (or as our friend and teammate Barry would say "competing") in Spontaneous Construction.  This is an annual event at Home ReSource that is all about creative and adaptive reuse.  It is a wonderful event and fun for kids and adults.  Contestants have six hours to build anything from materials found in Home ReSource.    This year was our first time in the building competition and we built a mobile garden cloche (little greenhouse).  

Abe Coley, contest registrar, registers a contestant 
Our little mobile greenhouse (actually 3 items in 1- see below), was selected as one of the contenders for the grand prize.  The prize determination will be revealed at a benefit auction on November 10th at the Missoula Winery.  At the auction, among other things, you'll be able to bid on our mini greenhouse and all the other top pieces that were built yesterday. All of them will be on display at Home ReSource (1515 Wyoming Street), until November 10, so you can stop by and check them all out.

We wanted to build something for the garden that was functional and beautiful that was made from from  discarded building materials.  All the wood for the greenhouse was painted redwood (you'd never know it from the paint) deck balusters, and the frame was built out of an ugly steel fence.  The glazing was single pane glass- and there is always tons of this at Home ReSource, ready to be cut up and put to use.

Six hours is not a lot of time. For maximum efficiency, we divided up tasks- Barry did the metalwork, I did the woodwork and glass cutting, and Marilyn did the site cleanup and all the painting.
We dressed up the cart with some shelf brackets and even garden shears for the handles (below).

The greenhouse (displayed in front of the proud team, Barry Cummings, Marilyn Marler, and me), is actually three items in one.  It can be used as a mobile greenhouse (as is), you can remove the greenhouse and use it directly on the ground as a cold frame, and then you can use the cart as a very study, heavy-duty garden cart.
The cart features 20" solid rubber wheels, and is made with 1" square steel tubing, expertly welded and fabricated by Barry.  The floor of the greenhouse is expanded steel for drainage.

Home ReSource is a wonderful place thanks to all the hard work, vision and dedication of its staff and supporters in the community.  Below is Lauren, the co- founder and co- director, his wife Aimee and father Larry.

Simon, the longest tenured of the many dedicated staff members.  Staff at the store are more recognizable now with the new, handsome uniforms.

And Matt Hisel (addressing the contestants, going over the rules for the contest), the other Home ReSource visionary- the co-founder, co-director and organizer for this years' event and fundraiser. 

It was a fun time with activities for all ages and creative interests (art, music, community, ice cream and more).

I hope to see you on November 10th for the Benefit Auction!