Fresh Budget Gardening Ideas for 2012

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I am a HUGE fan of new ideas for creating fabulous gardens on a shoestring. Since publishing The Small Budget Gardener, my excitement over recycled and reused items has exploded into hundreds of new ideas from around the world. They’re at my Small Budget Gardening board on Pinterest, a cool new site where all my fans can share these discoveries. Before you start gardening this spring, be sure to look these over for hundreds of ways to save money and get far more garden for each penny you spend.
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Aluminum Can Gift Pots

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While in Xochemilco, the ancient Aztec center of flower culture outside Mexico City, I came upon this brilliant no-cost idea. Aluminum cans, be they from beer or sodas are brightly colored, lightweight and won’t rust. They make the cutest little pots thin enough to cut easily with scissors or use a hack saw. Smooth the cut edge with a nail file or sand paper to avoid cuts. These examples below are rather beat up, but you can reuse your favorite drink containers to grow all the tiny plants you want. Small succulents and herbs are ideal. They make really fun gifts or decor items in small urban gardens. If you cut the can in half, turn the top half upside down so that the opening assures drainage. If you use the bottom half, poke some holes with a nail or ice pick to ensure it drains before adding soil. This is a nifty way to reuse aluminum rather than recycling.