• Kara Richardson

A Sustainable Way to Use Plastic Bottles in Your Garden

I believe in reusing whatever I can, and since my family still uses water bottles (we don’t have a water filtration system yet), I knew I had to find something else to do with them. After all, with an increase in plastics and a decrease in countries willing to take our recyclables, I’ve learned that recycling isn’t a cure all, and in some cases, should be treated as a last resort.

When I start seeds for my garden, I’ve learned that I can grow them all together in one big container. But as they grow bigger and start developing leaves, they need space to sprout. I “thin” them out, that is, replant each individual plant so that I’m giving them a chance to grow big and tall before planting them in their permanent homes. If I had to go and buy containers to pot each individual plant, I would be spending money that I didn’t have. Instead, I figured that I could use a cut open water bottle-something that my house sees an abundance of.

So, the good thing about using water bottles as seedling containers is that you can easily poke holes in them for water drainage. You can also cut them in half, flip the top half into the bottom, and (with the cap off) let the water naturally drain from the soil. I find that when I follow this technique the soil stays moist for longer and I’m able to reuse the water to re-water the seedling. And once the water bottle is used, I can reuse it again and again until I can’t anymore. Then, all I have to do is wash it out and throw it in the recycling bin. To me, this is how we should use everything we own. We should use things until they can’t function in any capacity.

So, in what sustainable ways are you gardening this season? Have you tried using water bottles? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

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