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Planted Junk: Repurposing Old Containers into Crafty Planters

Here are some creative ways to reuse rusty metal boxes and wooden drawers into great containers to enhance your garden.

A friend of mine and I were speaking about some of the that have been collecting a little dust or not selling. 

The pieces were old metal tool boxes, wooden boxes, old wooden drawers and galvanized buckets. I was determined to figure out what to with these pieces and get them to become a useful item for gardens.  

On a typical treasure hunt to the flea markets, I find all sorts of items to resell through my shop at   I never know what I will find or what I will buy. Things just calls my name.

I do have a soft spot for metal and wooden boxes and drawers — that's why I have a good supply of them. Incidentally, I have sold my share of them, but I continue to buy more, thinking that the supply will run dry. It never does and I keep finding them. 

When a customer does buy one from me, I ask what they will do with such an item. Most tell me they don't know what they will do with it — they just love it and have to have it. 

I watch them walk away after the purchase and wonder: are they like me and will never know?

So this post is to give the many flea marketers, garage sale buyers and everyday junkers a reason to buy that broken box or rusty metal bucket.

Here is a great idea for your new piece. Why not use it to grow plants, herbs or even vegetables? Yes — an old rusty toolbox is unconventional but in this new era of second-use, it is a perfect opportunity to create something that is unusual yet beautiful. But more importantly, it is good for the environment.

I gathered a few of the pieces that have not sold in the past few months and made a trip to .

I had heard from others that I needed to check this place out and this seemed like the perfect opportunity.

The place did not disappoint and was loaded with plants for both shade and sunny areas. They had so many choices I actually felt a little overwhelmed. 

Choices are good, but sometimes when you have too many it makes deciding difficult. Still, I was able to find what I needed to help my misfits find a new purpose in life.

As I loaded my cart in the parking lot of the place, one woman had asked me where I found all of my great pieces. Of course I had to tell her about my store and gave her one of my postcards — maybe she'll show up.

As I walked into the place I was greeted by Cyndee — she loves to talk and is extremely helpful. I asked if I could photo my findings and blog about it. She was most willing and gave me the royal tour of the place.

Without going into too much detail, you can read all about it further on my own blog.

My first advice to anyone wanting to do this is to take the piece you want to fill with you. No one cares what you are doing, plus people that shop at nurseries love everything plant-related so you'll fit right in and might even make a friend or two. I felt at home there with the other gardeners.

As you look for plants, be creative but remember to buy for the area you will place your piece at — sunny plants do better in the sun and shade plants... well you know the rest. 

Keep it fun and try and keep the same color tones. Yellow flowers and plants look great with purple flowers and plants, not sure why — they just do. Try orange and blue together or red and pink — that looks great too. 

Also remember to drill a hole at the bottom of your piece for drainage and water daily.

After you are done, place your new container in a prominent place and let it shine — after all, it is your creation. Show it off, you deserve it.          

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Analisa Harangozo June 15, 2012 at 07:44 PM
Another creative and beautiful, DIY project to do for summer! Thanks for sharing, Cisco! :)
Johnny C. June 19, 2012 at 05:52 PM
Thanks again for another great garden idea ! I know the kids will love doing this too.


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