20 Clever Repurposed Garden Containers

Updated: Apr. 19, 2024

Each of these creative garden containers once had a completely different purpose.

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Sue Ferris

Rain Gutter Planter Box

Have an extra section of gutter laying around? Drill some drainage holes along the bottom and mount it to a fence or exterior wall for an instant window planter box that won’t rot. Give it a new coat of paint while you’re at it to match the look you’re going for in your garden. Check out the wheelbarrow planter ideas and this instant and cheap planter upgrade hack, too.

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Birds & Blooms

Cardboard Box Containers

These days, the cost of container gardening can really add up. Save money and spend it on plants instead by using cardboard boxes as the containers. Treat them the way you’d treat conventional containers: Fill with soil, make sure you have proper drainage and don’t forget to water. But do they hold up all season? Birds & Blooms tested it out. They can also be used as seed starters.

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Birds & Blooms

Cloth Shoe Caddy Herb Garden

While this storage item may be perfect for storing shoes, it can be repurposed as a hanging herb garden.

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Elaine Jackinchuk/Birds & Blooms

Farmhouse Sink for the Garden

Salvage yards are a great place to find old home items that can be repurposed into garden fixtures. This vintage farmhouse sink, for example, may be past its prime in a kitchen, but it makes a charming container for prepping and maintaining your potted plants.

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Ronald Eller/Birds & Blooms

Wagon to Mobile Planter

Add a little DIY flair to an old wagon by building a big wooden planter on top of the wheels. Then you can tote your colorful arrangement anywhere in your yard.

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Claudia Dewane/Birds & Blooms

Antique Chamber Pot Planter

This vintage chamber pot is pretty enough for houseplants!

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Country Woman

Coffee Mug Planter

When it comes time to declutter your mug collection, don’t just toss the ones you no longer need for coffee and tea. Mugs are the perfect size for planting an indoor herb garden.

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Country Woman

Umbrella Door Decor

Fill a closed umbrella with cut or silk flowers and hang it on your front door for an instant (and creative!) pop of color.

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Country Woman

Old Tire Hanging Planter

Recycle old tires yourself by turning them into clever hanging planters. Drill a hole for drainage, paint it a bright color and fill it with your favorite flowers.

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Allison Thomas/Country Woman

Woven Basket

Breathe new life into those old woven baskets that’ve been sitting in storage for years. Create an arrangement of succulents for indoors or out. Did you know you can also transform an old log into a succulent planter? Here’s how.

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Amber Jackson/Birds & Blooms

Whiskey Barrel Fairy Garden

You can turn just about any ol’ outdoor container into an adorable fairy garden. Just add some small plants and fairy garden supplies to create an enchanting focal point in your yard. Looking for more ideas? Learn how to build a container water garden.

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Billie Hayman/Birds & Blooms

Birdbaths and Cinder Blocks

Old birdbaths and concrete cinder blocks make perfect outdoor planters. They’re heavy and weather-resistant, which means they’ll hold up to the outdoor elements.

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Lakshmi Sridharan/Birds & Blooms

Old Brick Raised Garden Bed

Brick is one of the easiest, most durable building materials to work with. You can build a simple raised garden bed out of a pile of old bricks, and it’s sure to look great and last a long time. Or, you can also opt for one that only requires some simple at-home assembly, like the VegTrug.

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Marie Brown/Country

Metal Antiques for Climbing Plants

This old metal bench was given new life in the garden. The seat provides a perfect spot for a potted plant, and the tall back doubles as a trellis for climbing plants. Looking for more? Here’s a list of potting shed ideas.

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Patty Samples/Country

Wooden Chair Plant Perch

Add an old wooden chair to your garden to provide a little elevation for your favorite flowers. A fresh coat of colorful paint will make it pop!

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Tamie Tarbox/Country

Washtubs and Watering Cans

Add a rustic touch to your patio by using old washtubs as planters. Metal watering cans will do the trick, too.

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Betsy Harrison/Farm & Ranch Living

Wheelbarrow Flower Bed

If you’ve upgraded your wheelbarrow and no long have a need for your old one, push it on over to your garden and fill it with flowers. You’ll get an instant flower bed that you can move around your yard as you please.

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Birds & Blooms

Vintage Light Fixture Planter

You can transform an old light fixture into garden decor by swapping out the lightbulbs for small planters and giving it a fresh coat of paint. Add a little birdhouse for even more charm.

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Michelle Minner

Stock Tank Planter

You can plant an entire vegetable garden or flower bed in a stock tank. Since they’re made for the outdoors, this large planter will last for many, many seasons.

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Sunnie Greenwalt/Birds & Blooms

Bountiful Bicycle

Catch the eye of passersby by incorporating a vintage bicycle into your garden design. Attach a couple of baskets spilling over with flowers and you’ll have a showstopper. Don’t let your flower beds get overrun with weeds. Learn how to prevent weeds in flower beds.