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Spring Salvaging: How to Turn Old Car Parts into Gardening Items

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Use Car Parts as Garden Tools Items Plant ideas

Grow your greenery in this gas-guzzler
Photo: Jocelyn Kinghorn via cc/Flickr

It’s almost springtime, and you’re probably eyeing your garden, mulling over the work you have ahead of you to get your nursery up to snuff. In addition to elbow grease, it takes a lot of supplies and creativity to make a successful garden–and you can find both in places you never expected!

If you have a broken-down vehicle in your driveway or rotting in your back yard, you can easily re-purpose many of its components as useful garden items.

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Here are some inspirations for turning car parts into garden devices. Make sure that before put any of these into your flower bed, you scrub and rinse them to avoid harmful fluids entering the soil.

  • Tires are easily the most useful and versatile vehicle components that you can put to use in your garden. Such heavy duty rubber can survive direct weathering for years. Stack them to function as planters, or cut them in half to use them as toughs for smaller planter beds.
  • Mount a tire rim on the side of your shed as a hose reel that will keep the rubber from tangling.
  • Tear out those seat cushions to use as firm padding to sit on while digging in the dirt. Or, tear off the fabric and use it for ties or lining the bed.

    Use Car Parts as Garden Tools Items Plant vehicle engine

    A classic car can carry a platoon of potent perennials
    Photo: Todd Lappin via cc/Flickr

  • If your dilapidated vehicle is a pickup truck, use the tailgate as a bench, supported on either end by a tree trunk slices.
  • Drive those big metal springs into the ground to use as a makeshift tomato cage or support for vertically vines.
  • Use the more colorful car components–like the brake light glass or license plates–as decorative pieces.
  • String small gears, washers, and other hollow metal parts as a wind chime.
  • Rinse out the wiper fluid/coolant fluid reservoirs and make storage containers to water, fertilizer, etc.
  • Strip those belts and chains to use them for sturdy anchors. Those seatbelts make handy ties, and their buckles can make them detachable/reusable.
  • Turn that plastic bumper upside-down to use its concave shape as a flower bed; drill holes in it for drainage!
  • Toss those mats on the floor of your shed or garage to wipe your shoes and soak up mud. They’re easily washable when they get soiled.
  • Glass from windshields and windows can be mounted to create small greenhouses for weather protection and controlled shade.
  • Mount door handles and window cranks as hooks for hanging tools or pulls for doors/drawers.Run that exhaust pipe through your garden and poke holes along it to create an easy irrigation system.
  • The car itself makes a beautiful centerpiece for the garden, growing vining plants and using the engine bay for herbs. The hood can keep the plants shaded from mid-day heat.

It’s a New Day! Improve your car by making one of these New Years resolutions…