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Build: Plastic Bottle Planters

Recycle old bottles into planters. 

Audience: Teen

Materials Needed: Empty soda bottles, decorating supplies, cotton balls, soil, sand or stones, plants/seeds, box cutters, markers.

Collect empty soda bottles in the size to fit the design you’d like. The size of the plants you choose will impact what you want to do. There’s a good selection of ideas here:
Use the markers to mark out the places you need to cut the bottle apart. Depending on the teens in your program, you may want to have this part already done before they start.
Decorate the bottles if desired. Use the cotton balls to fill the cap portion of the bottle. Fill the bottom of the bottles with a thin layer of sand or small pebbles. Start filling with soil and plant the seed or transplant the plant. Water and send home!


  • Only have the kids decorate the bottles into fancy planters instead of the whole project.
  • Plant the bottles with lettuces or small vegetables and donate them to the local food pantry (be sure to time with distribution day). Or plant them with small flowers and donate to a local senior center or rest home.
Published inProgrammingSummer Reading
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