Don’t let the lust for handy garden tools negate your efforts to be more sustainable!
We all fall prey. There are some great tools and solutions on the market that look just as cool as they do handy, and a garden nerd is no less enamored than his techy counterpart. But this year, instead of buying new we are getting inspired by these clever DIY garden tool hacks to make the most of our resources and hope that you will too.
1. Laundry Detergent Watering Can – From Janice at Hawaii Gardening. Take an average household detergent container, add holes to the lid and a vet on top of the handle, and tote water to your patio, indoor, and potted plants with ease.
2. Self-Watering Seedling Pots – From Skruben. We are currently using these in our own garden and find the results are true to hype. The soil stays consistently moist and 2 liters are a great size for nursury pots.
3. Canned Compost – For urbanites, HOAs and nosey neighbors might get in the way of having a traditional compost pile, but trash bins are never banned. If you have a spare storage bin or garbage can handy, you can make a compact composter that suits everyone’s sensitive sensibilities. If you are looking to buy a can, we recommend galvanized steel instead of plastic. Find a great tutorial at Tammy’s Recipes.
4. Hay Bale Cold Frames – Mini-greenhouses for the ‘tween seasons. Hay bales are not as readily available in the city, but they are often used as decoration in autumn and, along with the leftover pumpkins, are given away by stores after Halloween. Pair the freebie bales with old windows or inexpensive glass to extend your fall and spring growing seasons. When you are done with the bales, they can become mulch and fertilizer for the next season. Read up on how to build and use these cold frames over at Grit.
5. Kitchen Scrap Insect Repellent – From Clover Creek Baby. Ward off nibbling insects in the garden with a solution made from onion or garlic and chili bits. Effective against all insects, spray the leaves of effected plants 2-3 times per week. Keep in mind that chili also repels beneficial pollinators like bees and butterflies, so only use when necessary.