During spring cleaning, you sometimes come across items that deserve a second chance. Gardens offer those chances, turning old junk onto eye-catching, rustic, and charming objects d’art amidst all the natural colors and textures. Give your personal backyard Eden something extra with these upcycling ideas to beautify your garden.
Have an old wooden chair that’s becoming rickety but probably has a few more years of standing power in it? Cut a hole through the seat, insert a pot or planter, fill it with soil and seeds, and set it up in an area of your garden that could use a visual filler or conversation piece. Get a viny plant to wind its way around the chair’s back, armrests, and legs, and then flowers at the bottom. Benches, rocking chairs, dressers, and similar furniture works as well. Add some color to them with waterproof paint. Make it clear they’re not for sitting by festooning them with greenery!
Over their lifespan, tires perform a thankless job before being disposed of. If they’re lucky, they’re shredded and turned into mats or playground filler. Usually, even if they’re reasonably green and eco-friendly tires, they’re simply thrown into landfills and left to rot for a very, very long time. That durability makes them perfect planters for your backyard garden. Clean them up, give them a bright and cheerful paint job, then fill them with soil and flower seeds or other decorative, nonedible plants. Stack them to create a nice, layered effect.
Containers and Non-Container Planters
Do you have popcorn tins, old kid’s boots, plastic buckets, mixing bowls, baking trays, or other items that have seen their day? After cleaning and painting them, you can turn them into accent planters for a quirky upcycled look. The challenge is to incorporate them into the landscape, not simply leave them in a line along your porch. Consider bolting them to a wooden fence to break up the monotony of a flat wall. Stack stones in a back corner and create tiers on which to rest the planters to make the most of a smaller space.
Nature can inspire upcycling ideas to beautify your garden. If you’ve had to chop down a tree because it was diseased or dying and are left with an unsightly stump as a result—well, you can still turn that to your advantage. Get out your tools and prepare to bring new life to the old by carving a hole into the stump and turning it into a planter. Clear away any leaves or branches, then drill several large holes into the top of the stump. Use a hammer and chisel to cut away the wood into a wide circle, leaving an inch away from the sides. Repeat until you reach the depth you’d like, then fill it up with soil and fertilizer. Plant seeds or an already grown plant. Keep in mind that you can carve niches into the stump as well to hold pots or other decorations. Remember that, although the stump will eventually rot, you can make yours last with a polyurethane sealant.