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Repurpose a Chicken Waterer into a Flower Planter

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Repurpose a chicken waterer into a portable garden planter.

Got an old rusted galvanized chicken water lying around? Don't throw it out. You can easily turn it into a cute portable garden planter for bulbs, herbs, flowers or even veggies.

Early on I didn't realize that the apple cider vinegar I add to our chickens' water would rust even a galvanized steel waterer. 

So it wasn't too long before the inside of their waterer looked like this. But hating to throw anything out, I kept it, tucking away in the barn, knowing I could use it for something.

And sure enough, this year when I decided I wanted a small planter that was portable so I could move it into the sun or shade as needed, but couldn't find anything that I liked, it dawned on me that I could easily make a planter out of the base of the waterer.  Here's how.

Repurpose a Chicken Waterer into a Flower Planter

Here's What you Need |

Metal chicken waterer base

Wire brush (only if it's really rusty on the outside)

Metal drill bit

White Rustoleum spray paint

Small chicken decal

Tracing paper


Acrylic paint

Small art paintbrush

Clear polyurethane

Stones or small rocks

Potting soil

Flower bulbs

Here's what I Did |

  • First I cleaned off the waterer base as well as I could and let it air dry.
  • While it was drying, I rummaged in the garage and found a monster drill bit that I thought would do the job of drilling some drainage holes. It sure did! 
  • I drilled small holes all the way around the bottom edge of the base, then sprayed the entire base with two coats of white  spray paint.
  • While that was drying, I glued two chicken silhouettes to pieces of tracing paper. You can print any shape you find on google images, for example, size it and then glue it to the carbon paper.  I used two images - one facing each direction - but you can have your chickens all heading the same direction if you wish.
  • Then using a pencil, I traced the chicken shapes all around the base, just above the drainage holes.
  • Next I carefully painted the chickens in yellow and pink acrylic paint. I added a row of yellow and pink eggs along the outer lip of the base as well.
  • Two coats of clear polyurethane finish to protect the planter from the elements and we're almost done.
  • Partially fill the bottom with some stones or rocks for drainage and then top with potting or top soil.
  • And your planter is finished! 
I put some spring bulbs in for now - daffodil, hyacinth and crocus - but I think I'll transplant some mint in my new planter instead. That will keep the mint contained quite nicely and I can keep it on the back steps for easy access to the kitchen.

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