One garden artwork supply that you usually get for free are the little Styrofoam packing peanuts that come in your shipped packages. You can recycle the packing peanuts to create light-weight hanging baskets and large containers for your patio.
When you want to use one of those big, beautiful planters, you don’t need to fill the entire planter with soil. The planter would be too heavy, especially if you have a balcony garden. You can fill the majority of the container with Styrofoam pieces. Then, you can line the top of the pile with weed cover or an old window screen and then add your soil to your container. You can also place a smaller flower pot on top of the pile, just inside the larger one so it’s not visible.
You can also use this same method with hanging baskets. Hanging baskets can also get heavy if they’re full of soil. You can line the bottom of a hanging basket with moss, then with weed cover or a window screen. After that, fill the bottom half of the hanging basket with Styrofoam and then add another layer of the weed cover or window screen before adding your soil.
Reusing packaging materials will help you have beautiful planters and hanging baskets without all the weight.
Note: Check that your packing peanuts do not disintegrate in water. One gardener saved packing peanuts from a large gift in the winter, placed them at the bottom of a hanging basket in the spring, and found that the packing peanuts shrunk and then disappeared once she added the water to the soil.
By Shannon Mendez
All my hurts my garden spade can heal — Ralph Waldo Emerson