By Maggie Kent, Sustainability Project Director
After a long day of gardening in the hot sun what’s better then a nice glass of wine? Nothing. Wine and gardening is basically a match made in heaven. But what do you do with all those empty wine bottles? You COULD recycle them, but that’s not very fun. What you SHOULD do is up-cycle them! Since we’ve already established that wine and gardening are the perfect pair, why not put those wine bottles right back into the garden?
If your house is anything like mine, you’re lacking some nice edging around your garden. Anytime it rains all the dirt from my garden would ooze onto the sidewalk and it looked atrocious. Who wants to spend all that time creating a nice space for it to just be ruined? Not me.
So being the sustainable do it yourselfer that I am, I took all those empty wine bottles I had lying around just waiting to be turned into something wonderful and stuck them in ground. Who knew wine bottles were perfect for edging? They are super easy to put in and look great.
All that is needed to create this wine bottle edging is a shovel, wine bottles, and your own hands. It’s so simple there’s no excuse not to do it. Just dig a hole, stick your wine bottle in, and pack the dirt around it. You don’t even have to scrub the labels off the bottles because they’ll just end up falling off in a few months. Easy peasy! You could add some mulch for extra soil protection and aesthesis if wanted. Mulch will also help keep some of the weeds at bay.
As if having an excuse to drink a ton of wine isn’t enough to convince you to do this, just wait-there’s more. When it rains, water collects in the bottom of the bottle. If you plant anything (native) that attracts butterflies or bees you’ve just given them a perfect drinking hole!
Now lets take a moment to reflect on all the benefits of a wine bottle edging.
- You get to drink a lot of wine
- It prevents soil erosion
- Looks awesome
- It’s super easy and quick
- Saves money because lets face it, you’re going to be buying wine anyways so now you don’t have to buy some boring premade edging from Lowes
- You’re saving energy by not sending the bottles to a recycling center, or even worse a landfill, where a lot of energy goes in to recycling the glass
- You’re getting outside and digging in the dirt which is proven to be beneficial to your health (so is a glass of wine)
- You’re providing water for the wildlife
- You’re being sustainable!!!!!
In the rare case that you don’t drink wine I’m sure you know someone who does. Ask your friends, family, and neighbors to start saving their wine bottles and I’m sure you’ll be surprised how quickly you’ll have enough for your own garden. You could even ask some restaurants and bars to save their bottles for you.
P.S. Some great native plants that will help to attract butterflies and other insects while looking great are purple coneflower, white aster, lilac, butterfly bush, goldenrod, and bluebeard.