How to reuse bottle galas in your garden
How to reuse bottle galas in your garden? We’re entering the hotter, drier summer days here, so what better place to start than by keeping our plants adequately watered. Start by cutting the bottom of a plastic bottle and then poke holes in the cap or neck of the bottle.
Use for watering
This makes watering much easier as all you have to do is fill the bottle and then move on to the next plant. And if everything is drained by the time you’re done, it’s easy to refill them to give the soil a good watering. I particularly love using this method on thirsty warm season crops like tomatoes and squash, which like to have constant moisture at their roots.
Empty beverage bottles
Even with a rose bush fitted, sometimes spraying from a watering can is a bit too heavy for barely sown seeds or delicate seedlings. Drill holes at regular intervals across the entire surface of the cap of an empty beverage bottle with a thumbtack pushed ninety degrees into the cap for good direct flow.
Bottles are fantastic miniature greenhouses for keeping newly transplanted seedlings safe from cold temperatures and high winds, ideal for acclimatizing outdoors or kickstarting the new growing season. They will also keep birds away.
Narrower bottles are great for individual plants, and you can keep them from blowing away by pushing them into the ground, and then – for a belts and suspenders approach – push a cane down the middle to hold it in place. Larger bottles like the five-liter sizes are ideal for seedling clusters, while an even larger water dispenser bottle would provide even more options. Leave the lid open to ventilate unless it is very cold.
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How to reuse bottle galas in your garden? You can make very efficient tools from strong plastic bottles. Use a bottle with a handle, such as a milk bottle, to make an all-purpose spoon. Draw a diagonal line on both sides so that the top of the line is about an inch (3 cm) from the handle. Join the diagonal lines, then cut along them to create your spoon – the perfect addition to the potting bench!
Fence or trellis
The result is a very basic but no less effective fruit picker, great for extending your reach to catch those tall fruits. Plastic bottles also make handy little containers. Cut them in half and then drill drainage holes in the bottom half before filling them with the potting mix. You can also use the top half, of course, by drilling holes in the cap for drainage and then perhaps attaching your planter to a post, fence, wall, or trellis to create an original feature.
How about an automatic watering container?
How to reuse bottle galas in your garden? Cut a bottle about two-thirds of its height and poke a hole in the cap. Take a strip of cotton fabric (for example, cut from an old T-shirt or a sock), tie a knot at one end, and then thread the other end through the hole.
Great water reservoir
Flip the top of the bottle upside down, fill it with the potting mix and plant or sow in it, then insert it into the bottom half of the bottle so that the fabric strip hangs down. The fabric strip serves as a wick, drawing moisture from the water reservoir to keep the above potting mix constantly moist and your plants happy.
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You can make seed or grow trays from plastic bottles. Cut them straight up to make a shallow tray – don’t forget to punch those all-important drainage holes in the bottom – or open a two-liter beverage bottle vertically and poke holes along the bottom of each half. Fill with soil, sow and grow.