Gardener as Repurposer?

She says with a cartoonish imaginary light bulb over her head: “I didn’t know just how much of a repurposer I’ve always been!” I always thought of myself as a gardener first, but now that I think of it, gardening and upcycling go hand in hand.  Huh. Who knew?


Composting: Repurposing those scraps. Recycling that newspaper. Upcycling the grass clippings.

My trellises for sugar snap peas and other goodies come from the Mexican Bamboo canes I harvest every spring.  Be careful.  That plant is INVASIVE, but you’ll have lots of free, strong, bamboo like canes every season. And, in the fall the blooms are beautiful!

Mexican Bamboo, pink variety. Image from

Prescription bottles: seed savers.

Newspaper: seedling pots, first layer of mulch to suppress weeds, kneeling pad.

This might be a stretch to call it ‘repurposing’…but I leave the seed heads on my coneflowers (Echinacea sp.) because the finches love them come late fall.  I like to collect pine cones and acorns to make a little pile in a basket for home decor.  One year I gathered a bunch of scrappy, long twigs that blew down in a winter storm.  I arranged them in a large vase and hung little snowflake ornaments from the branches.  It was pretty.

What great ideas do you have that help your garden tasks or make your home just a bit more ‘you’ that are repurposed from outside?




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