Make Gutter Decorations for Your Garden
Whether it's reusing, recycling or upcycling, one thing that's clear these days is that actually throwing things away is both wasteful and unfashionable. From old furniture given a new lease of life by a clever paint job, to lampshades made of old books, or medicine cabinets made from suitcases, the ways in which apparently useless or unwanted household objects can be repurposed is limited only by your imagination.
It's a worthy trend, the early twenty-first century is still a wasteful time in many respects, but a dawning awareness that we live in a world of finite resources has given rise to a determined and often playful creativity. Even the most prosaic of items can find a new life. Take old guttering for instance. Maybe it's something that you found in a recycling depot or at an architectural salvage yard, or perhaps your window cleaners who also maintain your guttering have broken the bad news to you. So, what do you do with your old gutting?
Ideal For Your Garden
Some of the more attractive solutions to this particular question are to be found in the garden. Old gutters make fantastic planters...In the case of metal guttering it's easy enough to cut a section which is free of rust and block either end so that neither water nor soil will run out. Give it a coat of paint if you choose, or just leave the metal exposed. Upcycled items are often particularity attractive when the original purpose can be seen underneath. Gutter troughs aren't especially deep so they're best suited to shallow rooted plants, they're ideal for smaller summer bedding plants or fast growing salad crops.
Having prepared your basic lengths of gutter planters the only remaining question is how to mount and display them. The answer is pretty much however you like, hang on a wall, or mount on a fence top. Some creative individuals have melded lengths of guttering to uprights, creating living garden sculptures, others have built in self watering systems or even used the planters as a base for hydroponic gardening.
PVC Gutters can Get In On the Act!
More modern guttering solutions can also be recycled, how about using rectangular lengths as a holder for plant pots? Once again your plant holder can be hung just about anywhere you wish, we've even seen two or three chained together and mounted to the front of the house to make an unusual and eye-catching display. Even though we're mostly talking about recycling, short lengths of PVC guttering, bought new can be an inexpensive alternative to hanging baskets and if the recycling theme is lost the creativity is not.
The narrowness of the structure and the fact that you can cut to a length that suits you means that gutter planters are ideal for window sills. If your windows have no sills build a frame in any bright area. You could grow your herbs right there in your kitchen! Where space is at a premium this is an great way to get a lot of plants into a small space and create a talking point for your friends and family at the same time.
KGI is a nonprofit community of over 30,000 people who are growing some of our own food and helping others to do the same.
Join our mailing list:
Connect with us:
Kitchen Gardeners International
3 Powderhorn Drive,
Scarborough, ME, 04074, USA