Skip to Content

15 Ways to Upcycle Toilet Paper Rolls For Your Garden

Sharing is caring!

In the spirit of sustainability, finding ways to reuse and recycle household items is not just eco-friendly, it’s also creatively fulfilling.

Toilet paper rolls, which are often discarded without a second thought, can actually become valuable assets in your garden.

This guide explores fifteen innovative ways to repurpose these humble cardboard tubes into useful gardening tools, helping plants thrive while reducing waste.

1. Start Seedlings in Toilet Paper Rolls

Toilet paper rolls are the perfect size for starting seedlings. To begin, cut each roll in half and make four small incisions at one end.

Fold these inwards to create a bottom, allowing the roll to stand upright when filled with soil. Plant one or two seeds per roll according to the seed packet instructions.

The best part? When the seedlings are ready to transplant, you can plant them directly in the ground, roll and all, as the cardboard will decompose naturally.

2. Create a Biodegradable Planting Grid

For gardeners looking to maintain neat, organized beds, toilet paper rolls can be transformed into a biodegradable planting grid. Simply slice the rolls into rings and place them on your soil to act as spacing guides.

This method is particularly helpful for achieving optimal spacing with small seeds, ensuring each plant has room to flourish without overcrowding.

3. Make a Compostable Slug and Snail Barrier

Slugs and snails can wreak havoc on a garden. Fortunately, toilet paper rolls offer a simple, pesticide-free solution. Cut the rolls into sections and place them around the base of your plants.

These barriers are difficult for pests to cross, protecting young shoots. As an added benefit, the cardboard adds organic matter to the soil as it breaks down.

4. Craft Decorative Seed Tape

Creating seed tape from toilet paper is an excellent way to ensure even spacing of plants and can be a fun weekend project.

Lay out a strip of toilet paper and dot it with a flour and water paste mixture. Place seeds at the appropriate intervals, then fold the paper over and press it together to seal the seeds inside.

Once dry, roll up your seed tape for future planting. This method is perfect for planting neat rows of vegetables like carrots and radishes.

5. Assemble a DIY Drip Irrigation System

Efficient watering systems are crucial for healthy plants. By making small incisions in toilet paper rolls and burying them near plant roots, you can create a simple drip irrigation system.

Pour water directly into these rolls to funnel it right to the roots, reducing evaporation and saving water.

6. Protect Young Plants with a Cutworm Collar

Cutworms can damage young plants by cutting them at the base. To protect your seedlings, slit a toilet paper roll lengthwise and wrap it around the stem, burying a portion of it into the soil.

This collar will act as a physical barrier against cutworms and other pests, safeguarding your plants during their vulnerable early stages.

7. Create Organic Mulch Rings

Mulch is essential for retaining soil moisture and suppressing weeds. Chop toilet paper rolls into small pieces and scatter them around your plants as mulch.

Over time, the cardboard will decompose and contribute to the soil’s organic content, enhancing its structure and fertility.

8. Organize Your Twine

Garden twine is a necessity for staking plants and other tasks, but it can easily become tangled. To keep your twine neat and ready to use, make a small cut in a toilet paper roll and secure the end of the twine in it.

Roll the bulk of the twine onto the roll, and pull from it as needed, ensuring it stays tangle-free and accessible.

9. Build a Bird Feeder

Creating a bird feeder from a toilet paper roll is a delightful way to attract birds to your garden, which helps with pest control and pollination.

Simply spread peanut butter over the outside of the roll, then roll it in birdseed until it’s fully coated. Slip the roll over a branch, or tie it with string. Birds will flock to it, and you’ll enjoy the benefits of their presence.

10. Support Climbing Plants

Toilet paper rolls can also be used to support climbing plants. Cut slits in the rolls to create flexible strips that can be gently tied around young vines to support their growth without damaging the stems. This method is especially useful for delicate climbers like peas or climbing flowers.

11. Make a Mini Greenhouse

A mini greenhouse can be crafted using a toilet paper roll and some plastic wrap. After planting your seeds in the roll, cover the top with plastic wrap to create a humid microenvironment, ideal for seed germination. This mini greenhouse will help maintain moisture and warmth, speeding up the germination process.

12. Craft Plantable Pots for Gifting

Decorate toilet paper rolls with paint, fabric, or other materials to transform them into attractive, plantable pots.

Fill each pot with soil and a small plant or seeds before gifting. These eco-friendly pots make perfect gifts for special occasions or as a green gesture to friends and neighbors.

13. Create a Root Training System

Encourage a deeper root system in your plants by using toilet paper rolls. Plant the rolls deep in the soil with the bottom end open to encourage roots to grow downward.

This technique is particularly useful for cultivating strong, healthy roots in vegetables like tomatoes and beans.

14. Organize Small Gardening Tools

Use toilet paper rolls to organize and store small gardening tools and accessories. Attach several rolls together, or mount them on a board to create compartments for items like twist ties, labels, or small hand tools.

This organizer can be hung on a shed or garage wall for easy access and to keep your gardening space tidy.

15. Make Natural Fire Starters for Outdoor Pits

For those who enjoy outdoor fires, toilet paper rolls can be turned into handy fire starters. Stuff them with dryer lint and a bit of wax, or dip the whole roll in melted wax to make a long-lasting fire starter.

These natural fire starters are perfect for outdoor fire pits, camping trips, or as practical gifts for fellow outdoor enthusiasts.

Toilet paper rolls, often overlooked as waste, are indeed a treasure for gardeners looking to reduce their environmental footprint while enhancing their gardening experience.

From starting seeds to organizing tools, these cardboard tubes provide a variety of benefits that are both practical and sustainable.

By incorporating these upcycling techniques into your garden routine, you not only contribute to a healthier environment but also add an element of creativity and efficiency to your gardening practices.

Let these ideas inspire you to look at everyday objects as opportunities for innovation and sustainability in your garden.

Sharing is caring!