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9 Recycled Laundry Products for the Garden

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Where's the perfect place to find garden tools, planters, trellises and necessary items? Your laundry room. Who knew?

1. Gather Crops in Laundry Basket

A plastic laundry hamper works perfectly as a harvest basket for crops. It is lightweight, easy to carry and the vegetables or fruits can often be rinsed off right in the basket.

I like to use an old round laundry hamper to collect weeds and clippings in the garden. It is easy to move and holds a great deal of "yard trash".

You can find many other creative uses for laundry baskets from creating a baby bath tub to a party cooler.

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2. Make a Garden Scoop

An empty laundry detergent or bleach bottle makes a perfect scoop for garden soil, compost, fertilizer or sand. Just draw out the size you want with a marker and then use a craft knife to cut along the line. Be sure to rinse the bottle well and secure the cap tightly.

Of course, you can also use the top as a funnel by leaving the cap off. It's handy for filling bird feeders and even small pots and planters. Or you can create everything from snowmen to a lamp from laundry detergent bottles.

3. Protect Fruits from Birds

I planted my first strawberries this spring and I've put too much work into them to allow the birds to enjoy the fruits of my labor! To protect the berries, I turned a collapsible nylon laundry hamper over the plants. The plants still get sun and air but no danger of feeding Mr. Sparrow!

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4. Grow Potatoes in a Hamper

If you have some very limited gardening space or just want to show the kids how potatoes grow, plant in a laundry hamper. You can buy seed potatoes or you can use some potatoes from the grocery store that have just started to sprout. Just follow these tips on how to cut and plant the eyes to make more potatoes.

5. Use Clothesline for Drying Vegetables and Herbs

Clotheslines are usually placed in bright, sunny spot perfect for drying clothes and vegetables. Whether you have some bok choy or some herbs to dry use your clothesline as an easy drying rack.

The produce that you choose for clothesline drying should be lightweight and not overly wet. Leafy greens or herbaceous materials work best.

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6. Make a Clothes Hanger Topiary Frame

I've always been fascinated by topiaries. I love to go to Disney World and see all the characters formed from vines and flowers. Now, I doubt that you can create Goofy from wire clothes hangers but you can certainly form a lovely circle, square or oval frame. Then just train a potted vine or plant into the shape.

You can also create a simple shape like a rabbit or pig by bending the clothes hanger into the animal's outline. Use a child's coloring book as a reference or download an image from the web. Then use wire clippers and pliers to create the shapes.

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7. Grow Mushrooms in a Hamper

Why pay high prices for fresh mushrooms when you can grow your own in a laundry hamper? You'll most like need a starter kit that contains directions and mushroom spores to start the process. But once you get going, you can grow the mushrooms indoors in a dark place.

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8. Create Hose Guides from Clothes Hanger

Even though I have an underground sprinkler system, I still need to drag around a hose to water potted plants and rinse off garden furniture. Unfortunately, my outdoor faucet is behind a garden bed and I don't want those plants to be crushed each time I move the hose.

So rather than purchase ready-made hose glides or guards, I made my own from wire clothes hangers. I opened up the clothes hanger and made a U-shaped piece. I placed my hose where I wanted it to stay and stuck the pieces in the ground. Now, I can run the hose under these pieces and it doesn't flop over on my sedums!

9. Stake Tender Plants With Extra Clothes Hangers

For a sturdy stake for tender plants or vines, recycle clothes hanger wire. If the wire isn't stiff enough, bundle several pieces together. Not a gardener? Find more creative uses for extra wire hangers here.

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