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Repurposing in the garden


I love repurposed items in the garden.

Things that may be broken or have lost their usefulness are all too often headed to the dump.  But sometimes all that’s needed is a coat of paint, a little sprucing up and a healthy dose of creativity to use that item in a brand new way.

Not only are these recycled items being kept out of our landfill, but they can add such a welcome personal touch to your garden.

Here’s a few of my favorites…


My mother (who I dub the Queen of Repurposing) came up with this very clever way to use a beautiful, but broken, stone pot.

Despite being split in half, she still found a way to incorporate it into the raised rock wall in her perennial bed.

Clever, isn’t’ it!


Here’s another idea from my mother – fireplace tools as garden stakes!

Along with so many others, my parents also replaced their wood-burning fireplace with one that’s more environmentally friendly.

What to do with the now outdated fireplace tools? Garden stakes for her tall ornamental lilies!


My friends, Rob and Michelle, made this rustic light fixture from extra cuttings of thick and bendable twigs.

Wrapped with holiday twinkly lights it looks magical when hanging from their arbor.


The next time a favorite mug breaks, instead of throwing it away consider using it as a container for succulents.

The lack of a drainage hole might pose a problem for other plants, but due to the low water requirements of succulents, they’ll survive just fine with the occasional drink.

Just make sure you don’t leave the mugs out in the rain, where they would fill up and drown the poor plants.


And speaking of things that no longer hold water…

I love how ‘Town Mouse’ has repurposed her leaky birdbath into a succulent container garden.

Placing a shallow dish in the center of the broken birdbath, she’s still managed to provide a place for birds to drink while planting the perimeter with succulents.


And last, but not least, my very favorite repurposed item in my own garden.

Many years ago I found this old, broken down chair sitting on the side of the curb, waiting for the trash collector.

The frame was so beautiful I just couldn’t let it be thrown away, so I picked it up and held on to it for years.

Finally, one day, it hit me – make a seat and plant it!

Here’s a video I made showing you how you can make your own planted chair.

What’s your favorite repurposed items?  I’d love to know!


9 Responses to Repurposing in the garden

  1. Rebecca,

    I love the idea of the fireplace irons as stakes. I’m going to have to rummage around the basement and see if I can find my old set.

  2. What a beautiful little chair, I wish my neighbors put out such fun trash. I have dragged home some nice things but nothing with such charm! Love your mother’s use of fireplace tools. Thanks so much for sharing.

    • Susy – believe me, my neighbor’s trash usually consists of hefty bags full of garbage but every once in awhile……bonanza! Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Rebecca, thank you for wonderful pictures! Your Mom is a Queen! So many good ideas! I LOVE the video! It makes me want to try a similar project myself.

    • Thank you Tatyana – I’ll pass this along to my mother. You left a comment last year that my mother read and she thought you were so sweet. She’ll like this one just as much! 😉