Berrysmith Foundation

The D.I.Y Adventures of Tin Tin

If you’re an apartment dweller or only have a small outdoor area, get crafty and up-cycle your used tin cans to create a selection of pots to match your décor. You’ll save money on planters and create something charming and unique for your home, all while doing your bit to recycle.

What you need
Tin can (Any shape or size. If you plan on planting something edible in it, choose BPA free cans)

Kitchen roll

Washing-up liquid

Steel Wool


Hammer and nail



Plant/flowers/herbs, or whatever takes your fancy

What to do

1. Collect some old tin cans in the size and shape you would like for your chosen plants. 

2. If necessary, sandpaper off any rough inside edge of the can to reduce the risk of cuts.

3. Remove the labels from the can; it should come off easily as it is usually only glued in one strip. Thoroughly clean out the cans in hot, soapy water. For ones that held oil, wipe out the grease before you wash them. Scrub the glue line with steel wool, then remove the can from the water and lightly scrub again with steel wool; roughening the surface gives the paint something to adhere to.

4. Use a hammer and nail to make several drainage holes in the bottom of the tin.

5. Paint the cans in the desired colour. Allow them to dry between coats.

6. Fill the tin with soil and pop in your chosen plant. If keeping the plant inside, remember to sit it on a drainage saucer. 

Photo Credit: The Dos Family ‘Bring a Gift of Spring’ 


DIY tin can planter

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