Today is Earth Day or for many Earth Week. I like to think that every day is really Earth Day. In honor of the day, I’ve decided to do a bit of recycling. The following is a post I wrote way back in 2010, but I think it still works. I’d like to share a bit about how to recycle in the garden and even how to use recycled dishes to create art in the garden.
Actually, Recycling, could be the main theme of our lives. Now it’s called thrifting too. We’re a couple of old Hippie artists, who were there for the start of the recycling movement. For us it’s just a way of life. We buy everything used and we also get a lot of “good stuff” as I like to call it, absolutely free. Best price there is. And as I mentioned in other posts, it’s a pretty abundant lifestyle too.
Of course we compost. Every scrap of banana peel, tea bag, coffee ground and egg shell is collected in these recycled coffee bins that I brought home from a job. The tiles on the backsplash behind them are all recycled. In fact every tile was actually free and found at garage sales or from sample boards thrown out by tile stores.
The composter the food scraps go into, was also free. Someone in the neighborhood was tossing it. Our rainbarrel is a recycled drum formerly used for soap.
In the green house, I recycle too. Every pot from years past is saved to be reused, trays are sometimes taped up to plug leaks but are still put to work. These Black eyed Susan vines are sprouting in cookie packaging.
The seeds for the Purple Cone flower, which I am rather impatiently waiting to see sprout, are planted and living under the protection of packaging, which in its previous life housed a cake bought for my birthday a short while ago.
In it’s next use it may become storage for broken dish shards in my studio, like the many, many salad green containers already put to a second use.
Out in the garden we have, now wait a second, I have to mentally count, at least 4 wheelbarrows. Only 3 are shown here. All free or almost free. All recycled. I have an abundance of wheelbarrows you could say. I think they are kind of beautiful, in a sort of colorful, shabby, knocked about and used, way.
Now that I’ve reached the garden with my recycling theme, I’d like to show you a few pieces of our garden art. Now maybe art for the garden is an odd sort of theme for Earth Day but a lot of our art is made from recyled materials. The mosaic in the herb garden is a recycled chimney covered in old dishes and tiles.
The stepping stones are all made using recycled dishes and tiles, a type of mosaic art called Pique Assiette. In fact, all of my mosaic artwork is made from recycled dishes, tiles and ornaments. If you would like to see how to make them check my post Creating a Mosaic Stepping Stone Helen’s Way.
And old sink found in, I must admit, unashamedly, a dumpster dive, is home to our succulents.
The chime that Bill fashioned out of an old anniversary cup found at a garage sale and hung with flattened silver cutlery is another recycled artwork. There’s much more art to see on one of my previous posts about garden art called Bill’s Driftwood Chair and Other Garden Art Whimsies.
Here is another great little chime that Will made as a gift, with a metal tassel from a chandelier now no more and few beads and pieces of flattened cutlery.
There are so many things that we can recycle and reuse for our gardens from artwork to garden furniture to garden tools and implements. There really is no need to go out and buy new most of the time. I always like to say the world is an abundant place as long as you don’t mind second hand. Not buying new saves resources and cuts pollution. Buying used saves more stuff from ending up in landfills too. And the best thing is getting out and about on the weekends looking for deals at garage sales ( we always plot the most efficient course to save gas), enjoying the sun at a beach on the way from one sale and the next. Life is good. So that’s my little, I hope, upbeat, message in honor of Earth Day. Even the post is recycled.
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