Reusing household items for gardening

June 19, 2015

With climate change and pollution becoming a bigger conversation, why not try to reduce your carbon footprint and reuse common household items in your garden? Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Reusing household items for gardening

Reuse water

Instead of throwing out the water collected by our basement dehumidifier, dump it into an old garbage can in the garage and use it to water plants. If you work for a company that also uses dehumidifiers, take a plastic, gallon milk jugs to work, fill them with water and take them home. It reduces the amount of water you use.

Reuse coffee filters

Instead of throwing away used coffee filters, rinse them under tap water, let them dry by draping them over a bottle and use them to line the bottoms of your planter pots. You can layer several on top of each other. This holds in the soil, yet allows drainage.

Share plants

Each spring, tell your ladies' club to plan an evening for cocktails and appetizers. Along with a dish to pass, everyone can bring a cutting from their favourite plant. By the end of the evening, you'll have plenty of good conversation and free plants for the garden.

Get creative

Do you love to use recycled items to build things for the yard? Make a sunflower from rotary hoe pickers, steel fence posts and an old plow disc as the base. It's a fun accent for the yard, and it always sparks a conversation when people drop by to visit.

Tough love

Connect a small fan to an automatic timer and point it toward growing seedlings. Set your fan to turn on every 20 minutes. This way, plants grow stouter and thicker stems and are more prepared for life outdoors.

Satellite planters

When you no longer need your satellite dish, transform it into a gigantic flower pot. Line the inside with cocoa mulch and add soil to create a raised planter. It's 214 centimetres inches (seven feet) off the ground — the perfect height for viewing off the deck!

Reusable knee pads

Why buy a gardening kneepad when a piece of old carpet padding will suffice? Just cut a "handle" — an oval-shaped hole at one end — to easily carry it around.

Useful milk cartons

Use old milk cartons to start seeds. Cut off the top, punch holes in the bottom and fill with potting mix.

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