The school holidays are upon us and so far, it has been lovely clear sunny weather, despite a bit of a chill about.
But, two days into our break, my youngest little bloke has succumbed to the very contagious, hand foot and mouth disease. He’s covered in a nasty blistery rash and is as grumpy as a virally-infected three-year-old should be. So, our weeks’ activities have been cancelled while we endure an enforced quarantine.
Thankfully, The kids love being outside and in the garden, but we have another little problem.
Often, there are not enough tools to go around.
The kids seem to want THIS shovel, or THAT trowel. Or, I need a tool they insist they are using!
Plus, my tools, once borrowed, don’t always find their way home and I waste time looking for them.
Squabbles erupt and the fun is over fast.
As much as I love these fancy stainless steel Sneeboer Kid’s Garden Tools, at US$39.00 a pop, (plus postage) they are way out of my budget.
A bit of research had me raiding our recycling bin for our used milk cartons for a recyclable (and gloriously free!) solution.
How to make milk bottle garden tools.
I dug out two, two-litre milk bottle, and one three litre milk bottle.
First, I wanted some shovels/scoops.
I made a few different designs. The small, pointy one is especially ideal for filling my little handmade paper seed pots.
The kids impatiently waited for me to get the photo taken so they could grab their tools and begin the
Funnily enough, these recycled tools are now the most popular with the kids. Who wants to use a boring old scoop from the hardware store when you can use one you made yourself from rubbish?
They absolutely love them.
Then I got a bit carried away…
I made the bases of the bottles into little trays for my paper seed pots.
I made a funnel for my twine.
I cut up a heap of plant markers.
When I was all done, there was only a little bit of plastic left to sweep up and deposit back into the recycling bin.
The best part is, as long as we drink milk*, (or create some kind of rubbish!) we’ll have a supply of little scoops and shovels, tags and trays.
The kids can lose them, bury them, toss them in the composter and it’s not going to be the end of the world. If the tools break, they go back into the recycling bin.
Garden tools for everyone!
This small win with the milk bottle garden tools inspired deep dive into the recycling bin!
In our Subscriber Resource Library, you will find the A Farm of Your Home Guide to Recycling in Your Garden.
It is 18 pages, full of cool tips and ideas of how to reuse, recycle, and repurpose household items in your garden. Don’t miss it!
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*Update: In 2019 we no longer drink milk, but still recycle other bottles to make these tools!
What are your favourite “rubbish” recycles in your garden? I would love to hear from you, please leave a message below.