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Orchid Lady

Whilst making tea last night it occurred to me that the deep plastic tubs that some veg comes in (eg mushrooms and peppers) could be used for sowing seeds in, therefore saving money on seeds trays.  I also use things like 2 litre drinks bottles as mini cloches and empty plastic milk bottles as a 'watering can'.

So this got me wondering wether anyone else recycles everyday things in the garden and GH to either save waste and be Eco friendly or just to save money?

OL..........I haven't used seed trays as such for many are right in that most plastic stuff that we always seem to end up with can be adapted for other uses


Old washing up bowls make good trays for big pots to sit in. Deeper than those expensive plastic discs they sell.


I found that the plastic trays with lids that pastries are sold in make great little 'propogators'. They fit just right on the window sill and once the seeds germinate you can open the lid of the box.

Also a good excuse for a danish pastry with my cup of tea

Orchid Lady

I like that idea Scroggin, although no cakes for me at the moment 



I use the bamboo skewers sold for kebabs to support my sweet peas before they go in the ground.  It helps to stop them hugging each other


I use the spray bottles that the daily shower cleaner comes in for spraying whatever on my plants - lots and lots of rinsing first, and then squirting clean water through the spray mechanism to make sure it's all cleaned out - and don't forget to label with waterproof marker - don't want the Under Gardener to spray seaweed spray on the shower!!! 

Orchid Lady

Another fab idea Dove, why didn't I think of that   I've just thrown one of my empty Method bottles away too, oh well, I'll save the next one.  Do you make your own seaweed spray?


I use Doff Liquid Seaweed concentrated multi-purpose feed - available on Amazon if your local GC doesn't have it.

Busy Bee2

I do the same with the window cleaner bottles.  Pot Noodle pots make good plant pots with a hole made in the bottom.  And ice cream tubs are good too - also the tub lids make good stands for pots on the windowsills in early spring.


Nearly all my growing containers had a previous life as either food containers or cleaning containers - where I used to work (now happily retired - hooray!), salads would come in deep lidded containers - great for propagators - they fitted my heated trays too which was a bonus.  

Still, if you buy plug plants or anything like that they all come in plastic something, and what to do with them does become a problem - I do put them into recycling when I can't use them, in the hope they re-appear as something. 


cut a fizzy drinks bottle in half,keep both halves.put the screw cap end,minus the cap in your grow bags,carefully at the same time as planting up,or next to runner beans in the same fashion,just above the soil level.

Thus allowing water/rain water to go straight to the root system.It also acts as a slug and snail trap!!!!!.

Save the other half to collect rain water in.

Nothing goes to waste!!!!

flowering rose

I use the plastic trays ,toilet roll holders,old spray bottles (washed out well).

 Just goes to show we gardeners are an enterprising lot

As well as using most of the things mentioned above, I also use the plastic containers the laundry tabs come in - 6 cardboard toilet rolls fit just nicely and then you can just snap the top shut until runner beans/peas/sweetpeas etc germinate.

I also use a small plastic bottle, upside down with no cap and the bottom cut off whenever I plant a shrub/rose etc and as gavtheblade says the water gets straight down to the roots. This also works a treat in hanging baskets.


I use all sorts of things to plant in - old duffel bag hangs from an old tree with strawberries poking out of holes in the side,  toilet roll for sweet pea seedlings, tomato boxes and wooden boxes from the market for growing cut and come again lettuce and radish, bkacj and white print newspapers for mulch, yoghurt pots for snail beer traps, pallets for upright/vertical planting. 

Almost anything can be used to grow in, even if just for one season, and often the used container can go straight on the compost heap. Try jute shopping bags from the supermarket.

Oh, and there's quite often bubblewrap in banana boxes in supermarkets which can be used for keeping little things warm. 


Has anyone ever used 1 penny pieces in rings around plants?

Had a brain wave earlier thinking of the whole `copper`thing.

Those rolls are expensive and dont last.

I save everything plastic for upcycling in the garden but plastic drinks bottles have to be returned to the supermarket; we pay a 25 cent deposit on those.

I've saved widgets to put on the ends of canes, tennis balls work to.

I've also used old bamboo blinds I got for free off Freegle to screen the compost bins, and water butts. The really big ones you could use for stapling or fixing to old fences perhaps.

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