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Upcycling tips and tricks: Easy ways to make DIY planters out of these 10 household items
By Zoey Sky // Oct 08, 2019

There are countless ways to live a sustainable lifestyle. You can recycle to reduce your plastic waste, or you can upcycle old household items to give them new life. If you're interested in upcycling, try these easy DIY planters made from items you may find around your house. (h/t to MindBodyGreen.com)


Bundt cake pans

Make sure that old and rusty bundt cake pans are thoroughly cleaned before decorating. When you're done, you can plant some seedlings, and hang your bundt planters.

Chipped mugs or teacups

Chipped mugs and teacups may no longer be safe for drinking, but you can plant herbs in them to start a windowsill garden.

Coffee cans

Upcycle empty coffee cans as planters by giving them a fresh coat of paint.

Egg cartons

Remove the tops of empty paper egg cartons to make biodegradable containers for your seedlings.

The dimples or cavities in egg cartons are the perfect size for starting different types of seeds. You can also cut paper egg cartons apart if you want to separate your seedlings.


  1. Cut off the sides and lid from the egg carton.
  2. Secure the cut lid under the carton base to catch the water that may drip from the soil.
  3. Fill the egg carton holes about three-quarters full with potting soil.
  4. Put the seeds in and cover them with a thin layer of the potting soil. Mist as needed to germinate the seeds.

Egg containers made from other materials like foam or plastic don't drain. If you're using them as seedling starters, punch a tiny hole in the bottom of each egg bed before you add the soil.

Candle jars

You can upcycle empty candle jars as cute planters for your herb garden. Before you start decorating them, leave them in the freezer overnight to loosen up any remaining wax. Clean the jar, then add your seedlings.

Kombucha bottles

Use empty kombucha bottles to propagate plant stems in water before transferring them to a pot.


  1. Pick a healthy-looking stem, then use clean shears to cut it at an angle. When taking cuttings from succulents, leave them out to dry for several hours or a whole day before placing them in water. Drying out the cuttings seals the raw edge slightly and helps prevent rot from setting in.
  2. Remove the lower bits of foliage and other young growth that will easily rot. This lets the cutting focus on putting down roots instead of growing leaves.
  3. Place the cutting in a clean kombucha bottle with enough filtered water to cover the end of the cutting.
  4. After the cutting has rooted, usually within a month or two, transfer the cutting into a pot.

Mason jars

Mason jars are great for container gardens. But since they don’t have holes at the bottom, make sure you leave a layer of small rocks underneath the soil to prevent water from collecting in the jars, which causes the roots to rot.

Terracotta pots

Plain terracotta pots are fine the way they are or you can decorate them with a fresh coat of paint. (Related: Container gardening tips for the urban prepper.)

Wine bottles

Clean empty wine bottles and use them as a makeshift flower vase.

Wine corks

If you're feeling creative, you can turn wine corks into DIY magnetic carriers for tiny succulents.

Carefully hollow out the corks a quarter of the way down, then add a bit of soil. Add the plants to the cork then drizzle with a bit of water. Glue a magnet to each cork, then stick them onto your fridge!

Trying these craft ideas is a great way to go green and save money on planters, especially if you love growing decorative houseplants or keeping a container garden.

Sources include:

MindBodyGreen.com 1


MindBodyGreen.com 2



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