Don’t sling it!

By Julia Boulton | June 8, 2016
Image by Julia Boulton
by Julia Boulton
June 8, 2016

Julia Boulton is a professional garden photographer and Editor of The Cottage Gardener, the quarterly journal of The Cottage Garden Society.  She writes her own regular garden blog, Snapdragon Jules, at

Don’t sling it!

Clever gardeners never throw anything away without first questioning if another more interesting life could await it outdoors.

Pic1 teapot with alpine

There’s nothing new about recycling in the garden. For many years allotment holders and community gardeners have used old windows as cold frames, water tanks and trash cans to catch rainwater and made scarecrows from anything lying around to keep pesky pigeons off their crops.

In my own cottage garden here in the UK, many an old chipped pot, cup or saucepan becomes a temporary decorative container for a plant.

Pic 3 alpine cup Pic2 colander and cups

Biodegradable paper cups and egg boxes are saved for raising seedlings and clear plastic bottles protect young plants from slugs and snails.

Old cutlery has its uses too – for weeding in tight spaces between paving cracks, and for delicate manipulation of seedlings in the greenhouse.

To see other items I have saved or collected over the years, just delve into my GAP photos library pictures:

All I can say is that I have found a good use for everything that I keep in my shed – husband please note!

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