Laundry Basket Planter

When I see something left on the curb to be picked up by the trash man, my mind starts racing to create a use for this item. I begin to think I could totally use this for… and then, it becomes a “need.” I have to have it or my life will not be complete!

This broken laundry basket I saw on the side of the road was no different, except I couldn’t think of a use for it. I grabbed it off the side of the road anyways, not even caring. So, it sat in my basement for about six month when it finally hit me “I can use it to as a planter.” Here is how I turned this trash into treasure.

broken basket

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First, I taped up the crack in the side with some plain old packing tape. Next, I hot glued burlap on the inside to cover the slats of the basket. This was to help make sure my dirt stayed in.

burlap pannel

Then,  I covered the basket with burlap, gluing the fabric down periodically.

burlap wrap

basket corner

After that, I took a separate piece of burlap and wrapped it around the top edge and handles.

brulap to wrap

I glued this edging to the inside of the basket.


Then, I attached rope around the basket, making sure to cover the seam where the two fabric pieces came together.


A little hot glue was added to ensure there was no unraveling of the rope. After all this hard work, I wouldn’t want that!


Next, I tied the rope into this cool looking knot thing.



Finally, I added the dirt and plant. You can’t even tell it was a broken laundry basket.  Ye-haw!


What do you do with broken laundry baskets? Erin said “I would just throw them away.” To which I responded “If I lived closer, I would just pick them up.”

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78 thoughts on “Laundry Basket Planter

  1. Cathryne

    I think the same thing anytime I see things on the side of the road! Glad I’m not the only one. This is a great idea too. Might be good for a Mother’s Day gift! Thanks for the inspiration.

    1. Emily Post author

      Cathryne,glad you stopped by! Great idea to give this as a gift! It’s nice to know that there are other trash collectors out there. :)

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    1. Emily Post author

      Thanks Amber! When I stated with the rope, I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with. But it the end it came together and I am really happy with it!

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    1. Emily Post author

      Thanks Regan! I made this last June, and it held up very well. By the end of the summer the burlap had a little bit of staining toward the bottom. This year I just wrapped the bottom portion right over top of the old burlap and I am good to go!

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  6. Molly

    What a clever idea! It made me laugh that you picked it up off the roadside, and then it sat for a few month, it sounds like something I’d do, lol!
    I wanted to say thanks for linking up last week to our Lovely Ladies link party, and to let you know that I’ve featured it at the party this week. You can check it out here if you’d like-
    Can’t wait to see what you link up next :)

    1. Emily Post author

      I am picking stuff up all the time. My basement is full of “some day” projects. Thanks for the feature! What an honor! Glad you stopped by, Molly!

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  8. Gail McMurray

    You are so clever, what a excellent idea. I love the knot on the front. Just joined your email list, love your site.

    1. Emily Post author

      Thanks Gail! The knot wasn’t planned but it turned out great, so I just went with it. Glad you stopped by!

      1. Hellen

        i would line the basket with a green garbage bag to keep water in and avoid staining the burlap.
        Going to try this! Thanx

  9. Sandi P

    Love it! My head is spinning with ideas now for old baskets. Wait, my son left a broken old wire wastebasket when he moved out. :-)

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  11. ginnee

    Very pretty. I am wondering what it looks like when you water the plant. Wouldn’t the soil discolor the burlap or leave a water mark?

    1. Emily Post author

      Thanks Ginnee! Over the course of the summer it did start to show some discoloration, but it held up for pretty well and I recovered it for the next year.


    Thank you so much for publishing this DIY. Who doesn’t have a couple(or twenty) old laundry baskets around, you’re amazing!

  13. Roxanne

    i love this! My only question is, is there something you can put in the basket so you don’t have to fill it completely up with dirt? That would get heavy!

  14. Jessilune

    How durable is it? I know it is cheap (yay!) but if care is taken in winter I’d like mine to last more than a season or two.
    Also do you line it with plastic so when it is watered the covering does not get stained?

  15. shellie

    Love the planter!!!!!!! I have all the materials to make this but the rope. What size rope did you use?

    1. Emily Post author

      Thanks Lynn! It held up great for about 1 year then I just re-wrapped it with more burlap to cover any staining that occurred.

  16. Daphne

    i am yet another fan of this lovely repurposed planter! An answer to Roxanne’s question regarding how heavy this pot will get, put those über irritating styrofoam packing peanuts in the bottom of of the pot (about 1/4 or so) and that should help with the weight issue! Hope that helps a little!

    When I first saw this planter, I thought it was terracotta! Hmmm…a skim coat of plaster-of-Paris, or whatever, and then paint the perfect color of your choice! Terracotta, white, gray…your choice! Two of them parked at your entry. Yes! I am rambling, sorry.

    Anyway, thank you for sharing this idea. I love it!

  17. Glennis

    I love to repurpose things too. Your planter was genius! Actually when I first saw the finished product, I thought you’d used the basket as a mold for a cement planter.kudo’s to you for your creativity!

  18. Joyce

    This is really cool! I would be a bit concerned about it getting “dirty” (pardon the pun) after it had been watered a few times. Wouldn’t it be nice in the house with a large potted plant in though?

  19. Sandra Darr

    Wow! I have a broken laundry basket I was going to throw out.
    Not anymore!
    Lovely post, thank you for the inspiration!

  20. Ivory

    You know I often wonder where my talent went, now I know… You just show us that you are loaded with so much great talent. Thanks for sharing such beautiful work.

  21. Anne Love

    To wrap the basket you could use a natural cotton painters dust sheet, these are very inexpensive, and look just like burlap, they are basically a finer version. It’s a great idea to make big garden planters.

  22. Beth Nevels

    I just found this adorable idea on Pinterest. I was wondering how your beautiful planter had held up in the weather and if it held together during plant watering . Thanks for the idea !!!

  23. Carole Angel

    Absolutely brilliant idea. Just moved into a house with a boring yard and am always on the lookout for ideas. This is one I will try. May have to sideline my sewing for awhile and begin trash collecting!! Thanks very much for your post!

  24. Jemilah Senter

    Oh boy! This is great! However since my laundry baskets are currently in good shape, I think I will check the dollar store as they have smaller ones that I think will be great for this. I’m also going to try some styrofoam peanuts in the bottom. Thanks for such a great idea!!!

  25. Betty

    When you water the hostas, will the water seep through the laundry basket and burlap rendering the exterior burlap soiled and nasty looking? That would be my luck. I was wondering if some plastic on the inside of the basket (3 sides only) would prevent that; assuming that the the 4th side would be facing a wall. The other alternative would be to glue heavy plastic inside on all four sides, and drill drain holes in the bottom. Your thoughts and ideas…?

  26. Anita

    Great idea. I’ve been wanting a big square planter, but they’re so expensive, and I have an old laundry basket I can use.

  27. Debby

    I love this and will do it myself as soon as I get home. To address the water staining the burlap problem:
    First add those packing peanuts to catch excess water then line the inside of basket with plastic bag with holes in the bottom, then a few more peanuts before soil. I’m so going to do this. Thank you for the great idea.

  28. ingrid

    I just came across this on a Facebook post.
    I love the idea and the finished look. But I somehow question the durability and practicality of using hot glue which will not hold up to water over any length of time and also the burlap would get stained from the water and eventually get mouldy…I am thinking that perhaps before planting, lining it with heavy duty plastic would have been a good idea and made it last a bit longer.
    I am a crafter and I recycle, reuse, repurpose just like you and I’m not criticising…just sharing a thought.


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