5 Things to Do with… Broken Pots

Gardeners know how fragile these containers can be, but many also know that you can easily repurpose clay pots in unique and useful ways.

Clay pots come with one major upside: Because they are porous, air reaches plant roots and excess moisture is able to escape the container. The downside? Clay pots are fragile. In freezing temperatures, they can easily break. But don’t be quick to chuck all those chips, slivers, and shards into the trash! There are many rewarding ways to repurpose broken pots.

 

1. MAKE PLANT MARKERS

Repurpose Clay Pots - Markers

Photo: hardlyhousewives.com

Add character and order to your garden all at once: Mark your plantings with labeled clay shards sunk into the ground. Of all the different ways to repurpose broken pots, this one appeals partly because pots are involved in a way that stays close to their original intended function.

 

2. ERECT A TOAD ABODE

Repurpose Clay Pots - Toad House

Photo: homeandgardencafe.com

Toads eat bugs. Get yourself some free pest control by creating a cool, moist place for one of these amphibians to call home. Locate a shady spot where insects are a nuisance, then set up your shelter with a dish of water nearby (toads need to soak occasionally). Kids especially find it fun to see if any guests have arrived.

 

3. IMPROVE DRAINAGE

Photo: themarthablog.com

Potted plants need good drainage; otherwise, there is a real risk of root rot. Repurpose broken pots by placing some pieces into the bottom of a planter before adding in the soil. Doing this helps excess water drain out of the container and ensures the future health of your impatiens, petunias, or geraniums.

 

4. PLANT A MINI GARDEN

Repurpose Broken Pots - Mini Planter

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Yet another idea is to repurpose broken pots as the framework for miniature gardens. How’s it done? Simply arrange smaller (intact) potted plants within the larger (broken) one. For your deck, patio, or porch, it’s a little oasis that is as easy to make as it is easy on the eyes.

 

5. FIX IT!

Repurpose Broken Pots - Fix It

Photo: timetocraft.co.uk

Often, a broken pot can be repaired. Just clean and dry the cracked area and apply either cement adhesive or silicone caulk. Put those broken pieces together, then fix them in place with string or tape wrapped around. Let dry overnight and voila! You’ve saved a plant’s home—and a few bucks, too.