Reuse in the garden
Instead of throwing them away, many everyday items can find a new use in the garden.
• Reuse plastic bottles as mini greenhouses to protect tender plants or half bury and use as a water reservoir during the drier months.
• Dry and reuse crushed egg shells around seedlings to protect them from slugs and snails (these will need replacing after it has rained). Coffee grains are a good deterrent too.
• Use loo roll tubes, yoghurt pots or old fruit trays as containers for seedling.
• Reuse plastic tubs on tops of plant canes as eye protectors.
• Use old carpet (preferably natural fibre), sheets of newspapers or lawn cuttings as a mulch or weed suppresser around established plants or when establishing a new flower bed.
• Use plastic bottles as home-made bird feeders or bird scarers.
• Reuse old panes of glass to make a cold frame to protect tender seedlings.
• Reuse broken crockery such as mugs in the bottom of pots as crocks to help with drainage.
• Line a hanging basket with an old woolly jumper.
• Use cold wood ash (not ash from coal fires) to feed plants. The ash is a natural source of potassium.
• Make leaf-mould every autumn from fallen leaves, which break down into superb potting compost.
• Use old carpet as a ‘lid’ for a compost heap. See make your own compost bin for instructions if you are feeling really creative.
• Source or donate unwanted garden tools via Freecycle or Freegle groups. Alternatively groups like Tools for Self Reliance or The Tools Shed Project may accept donations of good quality garden or building tools.
• Ask your local garden centre if they accept old plastic flower pots for recycling, for instance Dobbies in Shepton Mallet.
Finally, make the most of the rain which falls in your garden by saving it in a water butt. Water butts can be purchase via our home composting offer.