10 Upcycled Plant Pot Alternatives

Upcycled planter alternatives for your garden

Before you buy new planter pots, have a look around your home.

With a little bit of effort and some creativity, you can transform household items like cans, jars and bottles that would otherwise be thrown in the trash into upcycled planters and containers for your herbs, flowers, vegetables and succulents.

In this article I’ve compiled a list of 10 household items that you can easily turn into upcycled pots.

Basket planter pot


1. Tin Cans

Tin cans that would otherwise be thrown away can be made into beautiful alternative pots.

Old cans like soup cans and pet food cans can be washed and painted in bright colors.  This is a great DIY planter project to get the kids involved in.

After the paint has dried, drill some holes in the bottom and fill the tin cans with rocks to help improve drainage, top up with potting soil and your choice of plant.

These tin can pots look great mounted on a wall in the backyard or on a shelf or windowsill.

2. Boots

Another clever plant pot idea is to turn old boots and shoes into unique upcycled planters.

All you need to do is drill a hole in the bottom of each shoe and place some small rocks in the bottom for drainage.

You can even paint the boots in bright colors to make them stand out in your garden.

Upcycled boot planter

3. Glass Jars and Containers

Glass jars are perfect for growing succulents and herbs on a windowsill.

Just be careful not to overwater them because there are no drainage holes.

Glass jar plant pot

4. Watering Can

Watering cans that have a hole in the bottom make perfect alternative planters for indoor and outdoor plants.

They look great on a windowsill or shelf.

Watering can plant pot

5. Bath

If you’ve been renovating your home and have an old bath or sink lying around, you can easily put it to good use in your garden.

These look great in a corner of the backyard and you can fill them up with lots of flowering plants.

Bath planter pot

6. Bike

Old bikes can be painted and decorated with baskets or wooden boxes filled with flowering plants on the front and back.

Upcycled bike planter

7. Wheelbarrow

Old wheelbarrows make gorgeous upcycled planters for the backyard and you can move them around the garden to get the best light.

Wheelbarrow planter

8. Barrels

Barrels that have been cut in half can be turned into beautiful alternative planters for the garden and they look great filled with annual flowers.

Upcycled barrel planter

9. Pram

Old prams make cute upcycled alternative planters. This one is filled with gorgeous Hydrangeas.

Pram planter pot

10. Logs

Logs can be placed on their side and hollowed out to make a gorgeous planter. You’ll need to be skilled with a chainsaw for this one.

RELATED: 15 Space Saving Garden Planters

Log planter

Other Plant Pot Alternatives

You can easily upcycle many other household items that would normally end up in the trash including plastic containers, milk bottles, old cups and mugs, wicker baskets, colanders, tea pots, wooden crates, muffin tins, old tires, toolboxes, plastic buckets, purses… the list is endless!

With a bit of creativity it’s possible to turn just about any household item into a beautiful and unique planter for your backyard or garden.

So why not swap traditional plastic pots and containers for cleverly upcycled planters to help the environment and reduce waste.

Here’s a quick video that shows how to make easy DIY upcycled planters from household items.


Have you tried any of these planter alternatives? Have you upcycled other items in your garden? Let me know in the comments below.

Are you on Pinterest? I have boards dedicated to Planters & Pots and Garden Ideas that you may enjoy. You can also find me on Facebook.

Upcycled planters

Upcycled Planter Pot Alternatives

Kelly Martin

Hi, I'm Kelly Martin, a landscape gardener and designer with over 10 years experience. I have a passion for small space gardening and I love designing and creating beautiful outdoor spaces that maximize the potential of small urban gardens. Read more

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Jessica Collazo

    This are such great ideas. I love the bike, it’s my favorite.

  2. Marcos K.

    Boots for planters!!! That is a new one.. awesome ideas. Very inspirational. Thanks for sharing

  3. Elicitfolio

    I love all of your ideas! They’re so creative! If I had enough room, I would totally try the bathtub idea! I plan on planting herbs soon!

  4. Subhashish Roy

    I love all these great ideas. Why throw things away when creativity can add value just the way you have. My sister is a garden freak and so I am forwarding these ideas to her. She already has few of your ideas implemented.

  5. Emman Damian

    Watering cans and logs are very useful for planting trees. It’s also very eco-friendly and water saver!

  6. Lyanna Soria

    Those are some great ideas! I’d love to make that boots and tin can pot. Looks cute and easy to find.

  7. Emily Fata

    I’ve already been thinking about what to get my best friend for Christmas this year, and I was planning on doing a plant theme (since she’s obsessed with plants). These are some great ideas of how I can add to her gift!

  8. Kristine Nicole Alessandra

    These are all so unique and creative planters. I love the one made out of a log. And the pram one too. I love hydrangeas!

  9. Rosey

    That’s a smart tip about the drainage holes. I think there are so many ways to repurpose things in the home.

  10. Anna

    Such a useful post! I especially love the Tin and Water Cans! Looks so original and stylish!

  11. Rupy

    These are such great ideas. I did not think about boots… I will use my old shoes for this purpose now…

  12. Cherishingflo

    I have a lot of jars that I am not using that could definitely go towards this.. and wheelbarrows are such a UNIQUE idea!

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