Introduction: Free Plant Pots From Recycled Plastic Food Containers

Since lockdown I have been trying to do more with my garden which is usually neglected most times (apart from when I can no longer put it off because bushes have overgrown over to neighbour's side). In my attempt to do more gardening and reluctance to spend money on plant pots gave me this idea, especially since the pots that I was looking to buy were relatively cheap plastic ones! This made me think:- why not use different foodstuff containers as plant pots? I started off with yoghourt containers like the one show in the images after deciding to write this Instructable I started seeing pots everywhere so keep a lookout yourself before throwing containers in recycling bin (the principle is the same).


  1. Yoghourt in a plastic container from your favourite shop!*
  2. Small kitchen knife (you need to be careful with this!)

* or similar sized container. Once you make the first one and have something growing you will see reusable containers everywhere! (With a lid if you're planning for indoors plant. Without lid for outdoors)

Step 1: Eat Contents and Wash the Container

The first step of this Instructable is to eat (or drink) the contents and clean the container :) basically we need an empty and clean container! As you can see from picture there is a lid with the yoghourt container, keep the small plastic lid as this is to be used as a tray.

Step 2: Cut Some Holes Around the Bottom Edge

Take the empty container and a small knife and make some holes at the bottom. Be careful with the knife but see the image as to what I have done. Depending on the soil type and what your plants are you might want bigger or smaller holes (not too big though). Although they are not exactly holes you get the gist, these are to let excess water escape similar to pots you purchase in shops. Some containers will be harder to make these for and might need a bit more pressure to the knife but be careful. Even better if you have a better tool that you can use try that I am using a knife here as everyone has one in their kitchen!

Step 3: Add Plant!

Fill container with compost/soil that can feed your plant and/or seed(s). It is best to use the lid from this step onward so that if any compost does escape it does not go all over floor! As with containers tops very in shape and size so use your best judgement as to what side is going to hold the most excess liquid when you water the plants.

Plant stems/seeds/etc. and watch the nature miracle (although you might need to wait awhile!) grow into a wonderful display! The two pots on the right I did especially for this Instructable (after procrastinating a bit) the one on the left is what gave me the idea before I decided to write this Instructable. From left to right the original contents which was delicious: Yoghourt, Coleslaw and Hummus :)

Step 4: Finally

When you water you plants be careful as to not overwater because the 'tray' will not hold much water. As you can see from photos I have a paper towel underneath in case hand 'slips'. You get the hang of it after a while and if you are a seasoned gardener you will not have this problem but it won't hurt to have something similar.

So in conclusion, not only are we recycling a container by re-purposing it as a flower/plant pot but they can be reused once plants get too big for them. So happy gardening (or recycling!) and hope you enjoyed this Instructable. Let me know what you think below in the comments section and post photos if you make one for yourself too!

Recycled Speed Challenge

Participated in the
Recycled Speed Challenge