Re-Use That Thing! Happy Earth Day, Y’all!

cateplanchettfinalI don’t have kids. I don’t have pets. I do, however, have two plants. I have a beautiful peace lily named “Robert Plant” and then this cool thing to the left that I bought at Trader Joes. Anybody know what its technical name is? I call her “Cate Planchett.” Since we’re all about sprucing up plant holders, I wanted to point out something neat about Cate that you may not have noticed. She is planted in a delightful blender pitcher. The older I get, the more I bask in the beauty of re-using something.

When the blender motor broke, I was kind of flummoxed. The blender was over a decade old and we could have replaced the motor… but… ooof. I mean, do YOU have a blender motor repair guy on deck? So, we got a new blender. But what do you do with a dead appliance? Our apartment trash chute has a recycling area, and (after checking with The Chicago Recycling Coalition on their page about ‘Appliances’) I placed the motor and blade portion to be picked up. The pitcher portion, however, I couldn’t part with. It was one of those cool, blue/green glass retro numbers and I knew I could use it for something. I didn’t just want to use it as a clunky pitcher with a bladed bottom. So, why not a planter?

As I mentioned above, I recycled the blade but kept the seals and plastic screw-on base- portion of the pitcher. Knowing that plants need ventilation in the bases of their holding containers (they do, right?), I took the lid from a plastic clamshell tomato container to make a filter. I thought that I could use the already slotted edge of the lid, but I couldn’t get the fit I wanted, so I wound up cutting a plastic circle from the center that was a little larger than the base opening of the pitcher. I made cuts roughly equidistant around the base and then placed it over the hole inside the pitcher. The below right picture is the undercarriage of the pitcher with the black screw-on base attached. Do you know what is hilarious? English… below is a picture of a pitcher.


Roots in Pitcher I gently transferred Cate Planchett from the plastic container she arrived in making sure to not pack the soil too tightly or crush the roots. I don’t have the greenest thumb. I’m still coming into my own in regards to plant life… but it is definitely something I am working to cultivate. Oh. See what I did there? So, if you have any tips, lay ’em on me. But, I love my reused planter. I keep it on the counter in the kitchen, which is appropriate. When I water her, I get to see the water trickle down through the soil. Another virtue of an awesome glass planter is that I love checking in to see what the roots are doing, periodically. So, to me, its like an ant farm… without the ants… AND I think it looks pretty cool.

We live in such a throw-away culture. Despite the cause being so overwhelming, every little bit really does help. Who would have thought reusing a tomato container made of plastic and a broken blender would be so beautiful? So, just keep your eyes open; in thrift stores, in your own house… think unconventionally and make something old new again and uniquely yours!

Also, PLEASE let me know if I am killing my plant. Man, somebody really should do a post on some planting basics…



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  1. Love it! I think a glass pot, in this case, pitcher, is awesome because you can see what is going on in there! I think I am going to take a walk around my house and see what I can recycle into a planter! And who knows, maybe a planting basics post will appear in the near future.

  2. PS. @ Sheila, it may be a cousin to Elephant Ears or it may be a cousin to Caladiums or it may be a cousin to both!

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