Salvage Gardening

Adventures In Junking
by Adventures In Junking
Whether you call it junk gardening, salvage gardening, repurposing or upcycling, incorporating the non-traditional and "found" items into your garden and outdoor décor creates charm and interest.
a vintage candy tin is perfect home for this begonia.
reappearing with an assortment of non-traditional garden containers: candy tins, a vintage colander with lobelia tumbling over the sides, even an inverted lamp shade to disguise an unattractive but functional plastic pot holding a pink begonia... loads of colour and interest.
everything in this little vignette was a rescue: the bamboo child's chair has a hole in the seat (soon to become a true chair planter). the tin can is a coffee can from work (I bring home the coffee grounds and use them to nourish my garden and fight pests). A couple of coats of spray paint, a lace border and some drainage holes in the bottom and I have a happy home for a geranium. The teddy bear was tossed out by a neighbour, so I don't mind leaving it out in the weather.
This baby shoe found by the side of a road makes a charming and appropriate planter for Hens and Chicks
This retro looking blender is a charming showcase for this contrasting purple petunia.
I love the contrast of this sturdy masculine leather boot and the tender, leggy pansies.
a close-up of the begonia nestled in a pretty, inverted, scalloped lampshade.
The Shasta Daisies and white pots (I have a pair) were both salvage as was shrub next to it. The white pots were an ugly faded black and a distressed white paint job gave them character and charm.
As smoking becomes a historic pastime, smoking paraphernalia like this pipe box provide fun repurposing opportunity.
Repurposed mailbox makes a great wall or fence planter. I added a found bricklayers tool to the front for added texture and the old rolling pin for signage.
a fabulously weathered piece of lumber inspired this sign and subsequent entire seaside vignette.
simple and pretty - rusty tin can whitewashed and embellished with lace made a sweet home for a petunia.
Adventures In Junking
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!
Frequently asked questions
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  3 questions
  • Ptaqueen Ptaqueen on Jul 06, 2017
    wouldn't you need to put holes in the bottom of these for water drainage? every time i've tried a plant in a "solid" container, it dies.

  • Nancy Nancy on May 21, 2019

    how do I plant flowers in a colander?

  • Pomlady Pomlady on Apr 18, 2020

    I have that candy tin with the little girl and the dog too and love it. I have also used tins for some plants and have tried lining them with plastic and also with tinfoil but they have always started rusting inside. The only thing I can think of to stop that is maybe painting the insides first but haven't tried that yet. Has anyone tried that or have another idea as how to keep the tins looking so pretty?

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2 of 8 comments
  • Linda Abate Linda Abate on Mar 16, 2018

    Love it when people think out of the box. All the ideas that have been posted are awesome and would make any garden or porch proud. The items that one decides to use as a planter can be anything you have and definitely does not have to match. Love the quirkiness of using things like the boot, the lampshade, the kitchen mixer, and of course the various shapes and sizes of tins. You really know how to make a garden a fun place to walk through or relax in. Thanks for sharing your ideas.

  • Andrea Macgillivray Andrea Macgillivray on Mar 28, 2021

    Yes, I have been thinking along the same lines.