You don’t need elaborate tools or equipment to make inspiring and functional designs. You only need to upcycle. Upcycling is the act of transforming some of your old items into products of different use. Not only will this save you money, but an article on Upcycle DIY shares that it will also reduce your daily carbon footprint. Plus, upcycling encourages creativity — after all, think about the new things you can make using old materials you have at home!

If you want to start upcycling, gardens are the best places to start. Here are some ideas:

Wide planters

One easy upcycle is to see if you have any spare tires, as these can be turned into wide planters. These planters are ideal for big plants, like trees, to grow in before they need to be moved. Grab a piece of plywood or spool and drill it onto one side of the tire to use as a base. You can stop there, of course, but if you buy a roll of rope — preferably sisal — you can glue it around the tire for an added aesthetic. This will also add extra strength to the planter, ensuring the rubber never breaks.

Vertical planters

If you’ve been collecting plastic bottles for a while, know that those are perfect materials for vertical gardens. Plastics love adhesives, so they can attach themselves to wooden gates and concrete walls easily. Fill them with dirt, and you can grow small plants in them. If you have kids, this is an easy project they can help you with.

Plus, plastic bottles won’t degrade for 450 years, according to National Geographic. Therefore, it’s important to get them out of landfills.

Flower pots

For those who like to drink tea or coffee, you can use the empty tins as flowerpots for your garden. Tins are usually made out of steel, which is waterproof and weather resistant. It’ll be a long time before it breaks. A home improvement guide on HomeServe Living notes that you can even turn your old drawers into a mini flower garden. Simply apply some waterproof paint over the furniture and line it with gravel. This is a great option if you want a bed of blossoms.

Garden labels

If you like to grow herbs, you know that remembering each plant’s name can be quite a challenge. This is why garden labels are useful. Labels are also useful if you’ve just planted a bunch of seeds; it makes things easier to find. But paper and cardboard never last very long. Fortunately, if you have some spare kitchen or bathroom tiles, these can be upcycled into garden labels. Just grab some tile paints in your favorite color and name your plants.


Aside from adding a tranquil element to your garden’s design, Den Garden’s tips for keeping animals out of the patio also informs that wind chimes can scare birds off. Bigger ones can even create louder sounds, which larger animals don’t like. Cutlery, keys, and other thin objects that create tinkling sounds together can be used to make wind chimes. Buy chains and use those to attach the materials to a glass jar or lid.

Upcycling is inexpensive and fun, so scope your home for some items that have outlived their current use and get working!

Check some of Go DIY Go’s other garden posts for more projects.

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