DIY Gardening Hacks That Will Give You a Green Thumb in No Time

Thu Jan 27 2022

No matter whether you have acres of land or a tiny balcony off the side of your apartment building, everyone can get their gardening on. You can plant flowers, succulents, trees, and even vegetables – you just need to know how. Thankfully, gardening doesn’t have to be difficult. It’s actually pretty easy when you have a few hacks under your belt.

From using diapers to keep the soil moist to creating a mini succulent garden on your desk, there are so many ways to get your green thumbs working. And before you know it you’ll be a gardening wunderkind surrounded by beautiful colors and smells, admiring your handiwork. Yes, check out these epic gardening hacks that you wish you’d known sooner.

Shoe Organizers Can Double-Up as a High-Rise Garden

One of the main reasons many people don’t exercise their green thumb is because they have a lack of space, and they assume that they have nowhere to start their garden. But it turns out that you don’t need oodles of land to plant some greenery. If you have a fence, a wall, or just a high ledge somewhere in or around your property, all you need is a shoe organizer.

If you have an over-door shoe organizer going spare, you can create a cheap and cheerful verticle garden in no time. You can plant anything you want in here, from herbs to succulents, and all you have to do is fill the spaces with soil. Just make sure that if you are using a plastic organizer that doesn’t have any kind of drainage, you’ll need to poke some holes in the bottom yourself.

Turn Old Boots Into Bright and Vibrant Pots

Who said you have to plant your favorite flowers and plants in boring pots? Not us. If you want to create a statement piece in your garden and have some leftover wellington boots, winter boots, or even just a pair of normal shoes, you can make something truly special.

Simply fill these shoes with soil and plant in the foliage of your choice, and you have some epic boot planters that bring your garden to life. The best part about this trick is that you’re not just throwing your old shoes into landfills. You’re actually putting them to use – and a very quirky use at that.

Corks Make Cheap and Cheerful Pot Markers

Corks are those things that are necessary… but also seemingly useless. Any bottle of drink that comes with a cork obviously requires one to keep everything where it should be, but when that bottle is finished you don’t really know what to do with it. So, you most likely throw it in the garbage. You don’t have to, though.

Corks are surprisingly strong and hardcore, which means that they can survive in the harsh winters and the rain. Because of this, they can be used as plant markers. These will help you decipher the mint from the basil, and keep your vegetable or herb garden looking ship-shape. You can stick them on forks, or just skewer them with kebab sticks.

Old Stockings Are Great for Keeping Your Melons in Shape

Growing your own fruit and veg really is a labor of love, but sometimes nature can get in the way and ruin things. Anyone who has ever tried growing their own melons on a trellis will know this – as before too long, the weight of the melon becomes too much, snapping the branch and often cracking open the melon in the process. Thankfully, there is a way to stop this.

To keep your melons in good shape you need to create some kind of sling, and pantyhose or stockings are perfect for this. All you have to do is tie the sling around the growing melon, and the stockings will stretch with it – allowing it to grow, but also to keep it safe at the same time. It’s a genius solution.

Crush up Old Eggshells to Keep Your Neighborhood Slugs at Bay

People who eat eggs will know that the eggshells can be a bit of a nuisance. What do you do with them after you’ve cracked them open? While most people throw them in the trash, what you might not realize is that they make the perfect slug deterrent. Especially once they’ve been rinsed and crushed.

If you spread these crushed eggshells at the base of your plants or just all over your soil, you’ll not only find that they’ll act as a fertilizer, but that slugs will find it impossible to slide over them. This will keep your plants safe and sound, and help you to avoid any slug destruction.

Lemon Rinds Make the Perfect Seed Starters

If you’re the kind of person that uses fresh lemons all the time, you’ve probably realized that the rinds almost always go to waste. Of course, the best way to reuse them is to simply let them decompose in your garden to release all of their nutrients into the soil, but there is something else you can do. That’s because lemon rinds make the perfect seed starters.

If you’re looking to plant seedlings, there’s no need to buy unnecessary plastic pots. For starters, they’re pretty ugly. And secondly, they’re not exactly eco-friendly. Lemon rinds are the perfect growing ground for these little seeds, and when they’re ready to be planted into the ground you can simply plant them in the lemon rind as it will eventually decompose.

Use Sponges to Keep Your Plant Pots Flourishing

If you don’t have a huge amount of lawn space to create in-ground plant beds, why not use plant pots instead? They can be kept both inside and outside, which means that even those who live in apartments can add some flower power to their lives. Keeping plants in pots alive can be tricky – but not if you have some spare sponges lying around.

By layering the bottom of your pots with sponges, you can ensure that your roots will always be aerated – lessening the chance of root rot. Alongside this, they can also stop your plants from being overwatered, as the sponges will absorb any extra water that may run to the bottom of the pot.

There’s No Need to Splash Out on an Expensive Watering Can

If you follow all of the many rules of gardening – which are largely made by people who want to sell you specific items – you could spend a fortune on tools. Before you know it you’ve spent hundreds of dollars on pots, scissors, seeds, and more. But one thing you don’t have to buy is a watering can.

While you definitely do need to continue watering your plants, there’s no need to shell out for a proper one. If you’re running low on cash or just don’t like the look of the real watering cans on the market, why not make your own? All you need is an old milk jug, and then all you have to do is poke holes into the lid. Then, you have your own DIY watering can.

Use Old Cinderblocks to Make a Raised Plant Bed

If you don’t want to dig straight into your lawn to make a garden bed, you don’t have to. It’s super easy to make a raised planter on your own – and you don’t even need crazy amounts of materials to do so. This is especially easy if you already have a few spare cinderblocks lying around in your garage.

To make a raised cinderblock garden bed, simply arrange the blocks however you’d like and fill them with soil. Then, you can plant whatever you’d like and watch them grow! The best part is that if you ever want to move the raised bed or even make it bigger, you just have to move the cinderblocks and make it happen.

Tires Make the Quirkiest and Coolest Planter Beds

When looking to add something colorful to your garden, you probably stumble upon colorful flowers. And while there’s definitely nothing wrong with that, we want you to realize that there are so many other options – and some of them also involve upcycling. This is especially true if you have some old tired lying around.

If you clean up these tires and paint them in your favorite colors, you can actually transform them into raised planter beds for your garden. They become a cool and quirky feature that’s different from anything you can buy in a store, and they’re a great way to save space if you have a small yard – as you can grow flowers up rather than across.

It’s Easy to Tell the Neighborhood Cats to Fork Off

Anyone who has ever interacted with a cat will know that they love to cause carnage wherever they go, and this is no different when they see a garden. They will dig up anything they see, and they don’t care that you spent a huge amount of time perfectly planting your flowers or vegetables. There is a way to keep them at bay, though.

If you have any forks you’re not using – whether they be plastic or wooden – simply stick them upside down into the soil next to your growing babies. The cats will soon realize that they can’t even get close to your plants to dig them up, and you’ll be able to keep them safe from harm.

Keep Your Plants Well Watered Even When You’re Not at Home

When you go on vacation or know that you’re going to be away from home for a long period of time, your plants can provide you with a whole lot of anxiety. Will they die? Will they be long gone by the time you get home? One way to ensure that your plants are continuously being watered even when you’re not at home is to fashion your own DIY self-watering bottle.

This trick is super easy and only requires an old glass or plastic bottle. Simply fill the bottle up with water – without putting the lid on – and then quickly turn it upside down and press it a few inches into the soil near your plants. The water will then trickle slowly out of the bottle as the weeks go by, keeping the soil moist and the plants watered.

Store Your Garden Tools in a Bucket of Sand

If you pack up your gardening tools in the winter and leave them in the garage or the shed, you might find that by the time spring comes around you’ve got rusty, blunt tools. That’s because you’re not storing them correctly – but you don’t have to shell out on an expensive toolbox or sharpening methods. All you need is a bucket of sand.

Not only will the sand allow you to store any potentially sharp tools safely, but the sand will also stop the tools from getting rusty – all while sharpening them at the same time! Then, when you’re ready to use them again, you simply have to find your bucket and choose your tool.

Use Disposable Diapers to Keep Your Plants Strong and Healthy

The key to having strong and healthy plants is to keep them watered, but it can be difficult to know how much water a plant really needs. Amazingly, one of the weirdest tricks in the gardening book is to use a disposable diaper to ensure a plant stays hydrated – but doesn’t experience root rot. That’s because these diapers include hydrogel, which is something you can pay a fortune for at an actual gardening store.

Hydrogel is similar to water retention crystals, which means that it can store water like a sponge, offering endless moisture to your plant. So, wrapping up a pot with a disposable diaper will keep the soil from drying out, and keep your plant hydrated no matter the weather.

You Can Grow Your Rose Clippings in a Potato

Roses are red, but they’re also known to be some of the most romantic and expensive flowers in the gardening game. Buying a rose bush will set you back a small fortune, but what you might not realize is that you don’t have to buy a whole plant. You can simply use a rose cutting or a rose from a bouquet to grow your own.

To do this, you’ll also need a potato! It’s super easy to grow roses from potatoes, as they have a high water content that will keep the cutting moist and hydrated, making the chances of the plant taking root even higher. Once it has taken root, all you have to do is plant it back into the ground, and wait for the magic to happen.

Perfectly Space Your Seeds Using a Muffin Tray

When trying to plant the perfect flowerbed or the perfect vegetable patch, it can be hard to sow your seeds the same. And if you’re the kind of person that loves everything to be just so, then it can be annoying to see your crops grow at different heights and in different lines. A muffin tray can solve all of that, though.

When you have your seedlings and your soil ready, leave your trowel in the garage and opt for a muffin tray instead. All you have to do is press the muffin tray into the soil, and you have evenly spaced, evenly dug dirt for you to sow your seeds. It really is as easy as that.

Never Spend Money on Buying Scallions Ever Again

Scallions are a great addition to any dish, but you can run out of them pretty quickly. So, what if you could grow your own supply… rather than heading to the grocery store each time you run out? It’s easy to do, as scallions can grow in as little as five days without any fancy tips or tricks. All you need is a jar or a glass.

To grow more scallions, you’ll first need a couple of leftover onions. Simply pop them in a glass of water with the roots fully submerged, and store them somewhere sunny. It’s best to change the water every few days or so, but before too long you should have your own fully formed scallions to enjoy.

You Just Need a Few Cups to Make Your Own Mini Greenhouses

Those who have a full-size greenhouse on their property will know just how beneficial it is when growing plants. The high humidity and the warmer soil promote strong, fast-growing plants. But of course, it’s impossible to just magic the space for a full-size greenhouse – especially if you live in an apartment. That doesn’t mean you can’t make your own mini ones though.

As long as you have small pots and a cup or bottle of some kind, you can easily make your own DIY greenhouse, and every single plant can have its own little ecosystem. It’s best to keep these pots in a sunny spot, and it’s important to water them regularly. But for the most part, you can just leave them to do what they have to do.

Newspaper Can Be the Perfect Home for Your Little Seedlings

If you’re still someone who prefers to read a physical newspaper than reading online, then you might not know what to do with your newspaper after you’ve finished with it. Amazingly, you can use it to plant your seedlings – and it doesn’t get much more eco-friendly than that.

By folding pieces of newspaper into pots and boxes, they provide the perfect growing ground for seeds. All you have to do is fill them up with soil, water them every so often, and wait until they’re large enough to plant directly into the ground. You won’t need to remove the newspaper either, as it will naturally decompose on its own.

Rid Your Vegetable Patch of Slugs Using a Bowl of Beer

When you put a huge amount of time, effort, and energy into growing the perfect vegetable patch, it can all be gone in an instant. Pesky slugs can destroy a vegetable patch overnight, and it can be extremely frustrating as a gardener. If you’re looking for a way to rid your vegetable patch of slugs for good, head back into your kitchen and grab a beer.

No, this isn’t for yourself. This beer is actually for the slugs. By putting a bowl of beer on the vegetable patch, you can almost guarantee that the pesky slugs will be attracted to the yeasty odors found in the drink. They’ll then slither all the way into the bowl and never bother you again. Of course, using eggshells is a more humane way to keep them away.

Use Corks to Grow Your Own Little Succulent Garden

Many people assume that to grow plants you need either a large yard or large pots, but that really isn’t the case. Some plants barely need any space to survive and thrive, and succulents are pretty resilient in small spaces. This makes them perfect for people in apartments to grow. Especially if you have some spare corks lying around.

If you hollow out the insides of corks and fill them with soil, you can pot succulents in there without any hassle – and they look pretty cool, too! If you don’t have any space on your tables or on your windowsill, you could even attach magnets to the corks and stick them on your refrigerator.

Easily Move Around Your Garden by Planting in Pots

If you have outdoor space and create a bedding area in the ground, you probably like to pot your plants into the ground rather than in above-ground pots. And that’s totally fine, but what if you change your mind and want to move those plants? By the time the roots have grown, you’ll find it difficult to move them again.

You can combat this by potting your plants in pots in the ground, however. This is normally only beneficial if you have a plant that prefers to be root bound and won’t grow too much – but it does allow you the flexibility to pick up the pot and move it wherever you like when you decide to do some redecorating outside.

You Can Have Your Own Herb Garden Anywhere, Anytime

Fresh herbs just always seem more aromatic and tasty than dried herbs, but people assume that if they don’t have anywhere to plant their herbs outside they can’t grow them. That’s just not true. Sure, you need a little bit of space to grow a herb garden – but that could be a windowsill if you wanted it to be.

To create your own windowsill herb garden, simply grab a few mason jars and decide what herbs you want to grow. You can then fill the jars with soil, and either plant the seeds or plant fresh herbs you buy from the grocery store. Before you know it you’ll have an abundance of fresh herbs at your disposal at all times.

Turn Old, Broken Pots Into Works of Gardening Art

Although terracotta pots are perfect for planting flowers and foliage, they are also pretty fragile. They can chip and crack when you least expect them to, and so most people throw them away once this happens. However, broken pots can still work wonders in your garden if you know how to use them.

By placing these broken pieces of pots on top of each other, you can create a unique plant pot creation that can still be functioning for your plants. They’re great for planting cacti and succulents, and adding rocks can even turn it into a bug hotel for all kinds of critters.