Greener Living

Reduce Waste with a Humble Can

There are many cans in my larder press, beans, coconut milk and quite a few of chickpeas. I’ve mentioned in a recent post that we are making a conscious effort to live a little greener. With that in mind, I’ve taken to being absolutely certain that I have no other use for things before they are discarded to the waste or recycling bins.

This leads me to the cans from the press. One can of chickpeas makes delicious hummus, leaves me with a bowl of aquafaba to experiment with. (Aquafaba is the liquid drained from the chickpeas, it whips just like egg whites. So far I have only folded into muffins resulting in a lighter, more risen bake. Next up, I intend trying ‘meringue’) That leaves me with the can itself. I have been transforming the cans into mini planters,leaving me with only the lid and paper to be recycled.

This is a super easy little project but very gratifying. Here’s how I transformed the humble can, reducing waste & ending up with something very pretty.

I pierced the bottom of the tin to add drainage holes, then gave the can two coats of Ronseal Garden Paint which I had, having purchases it in Woodies last year.




I added some composted and planted lovely trailing flowers that I picked up in Hennessy’s Gardening Impulse which is situated in Meadows & Byrne here in Wexford.


I’m delighted with the results. I have since done others that I have added seeds to with the help of the children.


The plants in these two are a Trailing Petunia Surfinia and the yellow one to the front is a Bacopa Mecardonia, both of which a trailing plants so I am hopeful they will be fine in the confines of the tins!


The cans can be used for a variety of other things too, from storing paintbrushes, cutlery storage, holding make up brushes, tea light holders and many other things that I have yet to discover.

Have you upcycled cans into something pretty or useful, or even both? I’d love to hear about it if you have.

Disclaimer: I bought the paint and plants myself and not asked to mention the places I have.


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11 thoughts on “Reduce Waste with a Humble Can

  1. I love this idea!! I’m definitely giving it a go. Simple ways to reuse items are the best.

  2. Given how many cans of beans, lentils, chopped tomatoes, and coconut milk we got through I should really do this! Tins seem quite small for the plants (I’m far from green fingered!) so interested to see how it goes

    1. They do seem small alright so I’m watching and waiting in hope! I’m going to plant herbs in some too I think and see how they go. (I’m not green fingered either, just winging it so far with some success and some failures!!)

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