Result: A Whimsical, Funky back yard!

10 Creative Garden Ideas to Reuse Junk

by Charlane Pereira e Rebello

Result: A Whimsical, Funky back yard!

Creating a nice garden is about more than having a few potted plants in your front yard. It’s giving your patio or garden space a unique personal touch. Get creative! Use broken glass pieces, eggshells, bottles, iron-frames and glass bottles to jazz up your garden space. It’s easy to design beautiful do-it-yourself garden art projects from junk.

Yes! Your trash could turn out to be just the treasure you need to transform your outdoor area into a haven all will admire. Think outside the box and have fun while you transform your house into a fun and eclectic space that is cozy and welcoming. You can read gardening magazines, or look online for whimsical garden ideas using junk. Besides, reusing junk is a huge money saver!

Here are a few tips to reuse your household junk…

1. Add Delicate Details with Eggshells

Had your breakfast platter of scrambled eggs? Great! Don’t throw away the eggshells. Wash and dry them in the sun after which they can be painted. Here in Goa we like bright colors so don’t be afraid to go with electric colors that grab your attention. Hunt for a twig in your backyard; and create an eggshell miniature tree that could beautify your garden, your own miniature bonsai tree. They are also very useful seed starters…. a little soil and some seeds and wait and watch them grow. A useful tip when breaking the eggs: break them in such a way that the major portion of eggshell is retained; not just half of the shell.

2. Glam it up with Glass Bottles

Do you have a small tree in your garden that didn’t survive despite your best efforts to care for it? It’s happened to all of us. Don’t fret! Using glass bottles, preferably of the same color and size, hang these bottles off the branches and bring your tree back to life (figuratively speaking). You can create a whimsical tree of bottles that sparkles in the sun and chimes in the wind.  Small longish bottles look great on thin twigs of the branches. Remember not to use bottles that are too heavy just in case they fall down. You’ll be recycling and saving your back since you won’t need to uproot the dead tree trunk.

Bottles

3. Tired of your Old Tires?

Do you have any old tires lying around in your garage? Don’t get rid of them. Use them to add character to your garden while saving money on gardening containers. Spray paint the old tire and hang it on the outside wall of your house adding compost and rich soil inside the tire and let the vines and creepers start growing. Or you could even place the tire in that empty patch in your garden, fill it up with soil and grow a few marigolds in it.

4. Boots Be Gone

Do you hate to see those old gumboots of yours? Take them outside and put them to good use. Attach them to the trunk of a tree or to the wall of your house and eye the pink lilies sprouting from your good old gumboots. It’s an easy way to add variety and color to your garden space.

5. Windows of Opportunity

Old window grills and wooden frames are highly sought after gems for decorating garden areas. So if you have some piled up after your home remodel, don’t throw them away! You could use the window grill or a wooden frame as a support for your climbing vines or paint them different bright colors and hang them from your fence. Or if you have an old railing that has come off you can make a fantastic garden trellis.

6. Bring the Sweet Sound of Birds into the Garden with Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Birdbaths

Build your own birdbath to attract a variety of birds.  Use an old shallow-based dinner bowl and fill it with water. You can use broom handles or rods to make it stand with the help of some adhesive. Keep the birdbath in the open so that the birds can quench their thirst and take a refreshing dip during the scorching heat.

Bird Bath

7. The Art of Plastic Bottles

Using plastic bottles is a common method of turning trash into treasure. Let your creativity flow! Instead of cutting a plastic Coca Cola bottle in half and using the bottom half as a container, there is yet another unique way of reusing these bottles. You could cut the bottle in half, then plant your favorite blooms in the lower half.  Suspend it from a raft or a tree branch and you have your own hanging planter.

8. Create a Perch for Your Planters

How about using that rickety chair in your balcony? The armrest is broken, and unfortunately, you cannot rest your bottom in this old piece of furniture without crashing to the ground. Dust it off, and give it a nice little paint job in white or bright strokes of color. Deposit it on that green patch of lawn and rest one of your conventional pots on this unique garden stand. Let the plant grow and drape over the sides.

Old Boots

9. A Rusty Old Bike Can Bring Life to Your Garden

No longer using that bicycle of yours? This rusted piece of machinery lying in your garage for the last decade can be reused. It may be scrap metal but it makes for an interesting focal point to your garden amongst the bougainvillea bushes and leafy green plants. You can keep it rustic with that rich red rust color or spruce it up by painting it in blue or white perhaps. Pop a basket of purple petunias on the bicycle seat…or in the bike basket. Picture perfect! Be sure to lean the bicycle against a stable tree trunk or a picket fence so it doesn’t topple over onto your bed of flowers.

10. Turn to Your Kitchen Cupboard for Fun Garden Containers

Don’t stick to the conventional policy of using pots and vases. Broken cups and mugs form unique garden planters. Use your husband’s mug; the one with a broken handle just lying unused in the corner of the kitchen. The colorful ceramic mugs placed strategically throughout the garden will make it look vibrant and invite admiring comments from your guests.

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