Plants growing from old food tins

Easy creative recycling projects

Every day, our bins are filled with waste. Many of us are used to throwing out plastics and packaging without realising that many of them can be reused at home. That plastic tray you got your fruit in? This could make the perfect tray to sow seeds in! Not everything we use needs to be thrown straight out - instead they can be turned into some super easy creative recycling projects.

How to make tin can pots
Plants growing in tin cans

Did you know old food tins or containers can make great plant pots? Simply add some paint and colour to the tin, plant your seeds and you've got the perfect little plant pot for your windowsill. 

What you'll need:
  • 1 tin can
  • Soil
  • Plant OR seeds
  • Hammer 
  • Nail
  • Paints
How to:
  1. Clean out your tin can (be careful of your hands - the edges of an opened tin can can be sharp).
  2. Create drainage holes at the bottom using a hammer and nail.
  3. Paint your tin can.
  4. Fill with soil and add in your plant or seeds.
How to turn your old tyre into a new garden bed
Plants growing in tyres

Got an old tyre that's ready to be thrown out? Tyres can make a great garden bed for your flowers. They're perfect for filling with smaller shrubs and perennials. Add some paint to your tyre and you've got the perfect planter!

What you'll need:
  • An old tyre
  • Plants OR seeds
  • Soil
  • Compost
  • Stones
  • Material to line the tyre e.g. a sheet of plastic.
  • Paint (optional)
How to:
  1. If you're going to be painting your tyre, make sure you clean it thoroughly first. Try hosing it down first before using a cloth to clean out the grooves. You can then use paint to add colour to your tyre.
  2. The next step is to line the bottom of your tyre. Make sure you use a material that water can drain through. You can use a sheet of plastic - just poke a few drainage holes at the bottom and this will work perfectly. 
  3. Once you have lined your tyre, add some drainage stones at the bottom. 
  4. Add in your compost and soil before planting.
  5. Water with the same amount of water you would use for a plant pot.

Note: Make sure you've placed the tyre in the spot you want, as these homemade planters can be difficult to move. It's also important to point out that large plants may not work for these planters as the tyres are too shallow for their roots.

How to plant seeds in used plastic bottles
Seeds growing in plastic bottles

Plastic bottles are constantly being thrown out around the world, with many not realising that they can have other uses at home. Try planting some seeds in the next water bottle you take home - this is a super easy creative recycling project and an eco-friendly way to sow seeds.

What you'll need:
  • Old water bottles
  • Seeds
  • Scissors
  • Soil
  • Compost
  • Labels (optional)
How to:
  1. Wash the bottles thoroughly to get rid of any residue.
  2. Cut an opening on the side of your plastic bottle, starting from the base up to the lid. 
  3. Cut drainage holes on the bottom, under where you have cut out the hole.
  4. Add your soil and compost.
  5. Spread out your seeds evenly on the compost, covering them lightly with soil afterwards.
  6. If you're planting different seeds in each bottle, it's a good idea to add labels so you know which one is which.
  7. Water regularly and you'll have seeds sprouting in no time!
How to turn your old food jar into a candle holder
Old jars used for candles

Got candles at home but no candle holder to put them in? Old food jars actually make some of the best candle holders. You can either keep them plain OR if you're feeling creative you can add some colours with some paints. This is a great recycling project for kids - they'll just love making their own special designs. Once the candle is lit, watch as the glow of the candle beams through to illuminate the beautiful painted colours. 

What you'll need:
  • Old food/jam jars
  • Paint
Earth Hour

Earth Hour is on Sunday, 27th March from 8.30-9.30pm. Lights are switched off during this hour to raise awareness about climate change. This event is a reminder for us all to do what we can to help the environment. Whether it's making one of these creative recycling projects, or putting in effort to buy items with less packaging. Let's all make sure to do our part and help to create a better world for generations to come!

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