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Back to How To....    |   How to Build a Vegetable Trug

Have you ever gone out to harvest your garden produce and ended up with more than you could carry?  Wouldn’t it be handy to have something to carry all that produce in?  A trug is a traditional way to carry produce from the field.  It can carry more than you can in your arms but is shallow enough that your tomatoes do not get squashed in the bottom.

To build the trug, you will need the following:

12’ of 1 X 6” wood

3 pieces 1/2 inch ash cane for the handle or a 4’ piece of 2x4 to cut your own cane for the handle.

You will also need a protractor and a pencil, and nails.  I used cut nails for this project because they add an antique feel to the project.  If you use cut nails, remember you have to drill pilot holes for them or they will split the wood.

You need to cut two 16” pieces and two 22” pieces for the sides.  We will cut the wood for the bottom when the sides are constructed.

Now, take each board and mark a fifteen degree angle on each end.  Draw a line from one corner to the other edge of the board through the fifteen degree angle.  Make sure you have the wide side of the line on the same side of each board.

Now you will cut along each line on each board.  When you make the cut, you need to bevel it 15 degrees on your circular saw.  Most saws have a bevel adjustment with 15 degrees marked on it.

Now assemble the sides of the box, with the sides sloping inward so the bottom of the box is smaller than the top of the box.

Measure the bottom of the box and cut your boards to fit.  You will have to butt three planks across to make the bottom of the board.

Now you have a choice to make about the handle.  I used three pieces of 1/2” ash cane, glued together and to each edge of the trug, then nailed in.  You can also rip a 4” piece of 1/16-1/8” thick strip off of a 2X4 and bend it, carefully, to make the handle.  If you do that, you will need to rip two pieces off, bend one and fasten it to the trug, then bend the other one over it.  Glue them together and nail with decretive copper nails. 

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