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Trash into treasure: ideas for saving money in your backyard

5 min read


Breathe new life into your outdoor space by turning trash into nifty backyard items.

It’s called ‘upcycling’, and it’s quickly growing in popularity.

It makes sense. Rather than throwing out old, unwanted items, why not find a creative new purpose for them in your very own backyard?

It’s great for the environment, it saves you money, and it can turn your outdoor space into something that is uniquely yours.

There are literally thousands of ways to repurpose your old junk in the garden, and the majority of them won’t break the bank.

Turning trash into treasure requires a bit of a creative streak, and it can be hard to get those juices flowing.

That’s why we’ve found some nifty ways to take your junk and turn it into neat backyard items!

Get creative with planters

This might seem like an obvious one, but you can make a planter out of almost anything.

The general rule is that if it has adequate drainage and can hold dirt, you can plant something in it!

Objects like colanders are perfect for this, since they come with holes already drilled.

Other items like old tyres, gumboots, drawers and even wicker baskets can be turned into planters.

There are countless tutorials online detailing how to turn everyday objects into planters for your backyard.

Don’t feel left out if you don’t have much space; you can make planters out of small objects and hang them on the wall or the fence!

Trash into treasure: ideas for your backyard - You can make planters out of everyday objects, Australian Outdoor Living.
You can make planters out of everyday objects.

Make some labels for your herb garden

Old corks from wine bottles can come in really handy if you find yourself losing track of which herbs you’ve planted where.

Take a permanent marker, label the corks with the names of your herbs, poke a wooden skewer through it and stick it in the dirt.

You’ll never mix up your herbs again, and the corks will add a rustic feel to your yard.

Turn your dried up grassed area into a stylish lawn

Installing artificial grass is a great way to turn that drab space into a stylish area. Best of all, it saves you money on water and maintenance costs!

Artificial lawn doesn’t require any watering whatsoever. This means your water bill will drop. You can even sell your lawnmower, since you’ll never need it again!

Turn wooden pallets into nifty racks

Install garage storage hooks on your old wooden pallets and hang them on the wall.

Shovels, rakes, brooms, trowels, hoses and more can be conveniently stored, saving space and giving the place a unique feel.

If you’ve already got your tools neatly packed away, pallets can also be used to hang pot plants.

This creates a funky hanging garden, perfect for seedlings and smaller plants.

Trash into treasure: ideas for your backyard - Hang your wooden pallets from the wall to create a rustic space-saver, Australian Outdoor Living.
Hang your wooden pallets from the wall to create a rustic space-saver.

Reinvent your old compact discs

Now that pretty much everyone has Spotify, those mix CDs you ‘ripped’ in middle school are pointless.

Make the most of your old obsession with pop music of the early 2000s and break the CD’s into pieces, creating hundreds of shards of shiny, reflective plastic.

Stick them to a shallow bowl-shaped object, mount it on a stand and put it in your backyard.

Birds will flock to your homemade birdbath, and you’ll also see fewer insects in your yard as a result!

Here’s a handy tip: use a clear aquarium sealant.

It’s animal friendly, so you won’t have to worry about the health of your feathered friends!

Trash into treasure: ideas for your backyard - Create a pretty birdbath with your old compact discs, Australian Outdoor Living.
Create a pretty birdbath with your old compact discs.

Save money on seed raising trays

Don’t fork out your hard-earned money at a garden centre for seed tray.

You can use plenty of items around the house, most of which you’d just throw away anyway.

Grow seedlings in egg cartons, toilet rolls, milk cartons and plastic meat trays.

The best part about this method is you’re saving them from rotting in a landfill for years to come.

In order to get the best out of your seedlings, make sure you research the best ways to repurpose each of these objects.

Read here to learn about 30 DIY backyard ideas and projects.

There are hundreds of other upcycling options available; all it takes is a bit of research and creativity!

If you’re after something to go with your uniquely upcycled backyard, why not contact Australian Outdoor Living?

We’re specialists in the following products:

Get in touch with us today – we’d love to assist you with your next home improvement project!


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