Recycle, Retain, Re-purpose Your Deck Lumber


Many times when replacing an existing deck the old framing lumber is taken to the recycling center or the dump without consideration as to how it can be re-purposed.   In some cases the pressure-treated lumber that provided the infrastructure for the old deck is still in good condition even when the deck boards are worn out and rotted.

Here are two ideas for re-using your old deck lumber as a way of enhancing your garden, saving money and reducing the amount of construction debris in the land fill.

New Retaining Wall

Retaining wall constructed of recycled deck lumber

The photo at the left is an example of a retaining wall for a terraced garden that was constructed entirely of recycled lumber that was salvaged during the demolition of their old deck.   Before tearing down the old deck we assessed the condition of the pressure treated framing lumber and then calculated the lumber requirements of the new retaining wall.  As luck would have it, there was more than enough good wood from which to build the new wall.    The labor needed to pull nails and screws from the lumber before re-using it was much less than the cost of buying new materials.    This approach also saved hauling and dump fees and greatly reduced the amount of debris going to the land-fill

Raised Flower or Vegetable Beds
Another way to creatively reuse pressure-treated lumber is to construct raised flower or vegetable beds for planting.   The raised beds are easier to garden and maintain by eliminating the need to bend over or kneel to reach the plants.   They are also create focal points for the eye that are beautiful to look at and stand out from the surrounding landscape.    Raised gardens can be easily segregated for specific uses and the soil amended for raising diverse crops such as  herbs, home-grown tomatoes, vegetables and flowers for in-door arrangements.   The photos below offer up a couple of simple layout options for raised gardens that are fairly easy to construct and attractive to look at when completed.
Raised cutting garden for flowers

Raised cutting garden made of recycled lumber

Two-tier raised vegetable bed

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About hdrremodeling

Co-owner and Creative Director of solutions focused. highly creative residential remodeling company.
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One Response to Recycle, Retain, Re-purpose Your Deck Lumber

  1. Dana says:

    Some good ideas for recycling pressure treated wood but I would NOT use PT wood for growing vegetables. There are still toxic chemicals in the wood that will leach out into the soil and end up in your food.

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