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Six Projects to Make With Recycled Plastic Bottles and Jugs

SAFETY FIRST: Ask an adult to help with tools you haven't used before.

Recycle empty plastic bottles and jugs into these fun and useful projects.


Cut four holes 2″ from the bottom on each side of a half-gallon milk jug. Below each hole, make a small hole and poke dowels or sticks through the feeder. Ask an adult to drill a small hole in the cap.

Attach a string or metal coat hanger, fill with birdseed and hang it up.


Cut the top third off a 2-liter plastic bottle. Ask an adult to drill a small hole in the cap. Pass a string through the hole. Fill the bottom of the bottle about half way with water. Place the top upside-down in the bottom and put in your plant. The string will wick up the water into the soil.


Cut the bottoms off two 1-gallon milk jugs. Make a ball from rolled-up plastic grocery bags and tape. Enjoy a game of catch.


Cut a hand-size hole opposite the handle on a 1-gallon milk jug. Slide the handle onto your belt. You’re ready to pick and hold more berries.


Cut the bottom from a milk jug about 3″ high. Cut three or four 3″ circles from the upper part of the jug. Try to sail the disks into the milk-jug bottom.


Cut a 1-gallon milk jug at an angle as shown. This is great for spreading compost or removing water from a boat.


Check out these photos of the completed project sent to us by Boys’ Life readers. If you have a photos of a BL Workshop project, please use the form below to send them to us.

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54 Comments on Six Projects to Make With Recycled Plastic Bottles and Jugs


  2. this is neat! 🙂

  3. I likey

  4. last four are strange

  5. lol hf (laugh out loud) (have fun)

  6. any more ideas??

  7. Simple things can still be cool

  8. awesome

  9. garden furnisher // October 24, 2009 at 5:07 am // Reply

    Does anyone know how to make a sculpture of a flying bird out of a two litre plastic milk bottle? I’m trying but haven’t got it right yet. it looks like a flying swan at the moment!

  10. great tips and work very well

  11. cool ideas for the bird feeders

  12. awesome ideas. this was a BIG HELP!

  13. natitonic // May 9, 2009 at 9:52 am // Reply

    i like the self watering plant!

  14. stop smoking plan // May 3, 2009 at 8:08 am // Reply

    Simple tips but great ideas!!!

  15. spyscout123 // March 30, 2009 at 8:16 am // Reply

    cool i’ll try most of them.

  16. awsome dude

  17. Battleaxe dude // March 9, 2009 at 8:39 am // Reply

    I think almost everyone was to simple except the self-watering plant

  18. Tractorman // March 8, 2009 at 7:36 am // Reply

    I would love to see how to make a robot. How about electricity projects?!

  19. For the self-watering planter, it may be useful to know some of these tips.
    1) use COTTON string. plastic stuff won’t work.
    2) use about 5 strings. one string will not bring anough water to the plant.
    3) use soil made for seed starting or potting. regualr soil from the garden will compress and become some what like concrete (not good)
    4) once in a while, take apart the planter and wash the water resvoir and strings.

    the best of luck

  20. these are all eally cool and i think i might try some. these projects are becoming really fun for me and my family!!!

  21. I punched holes and added a string handle to help get the planter out. This makes it easier to add water. I also decorated the base for Valentine’s Day.

  22. I am gonna try out the feeder.

  23. Has anybody made the self watering plant holder? Has anybody made modificacons to it?

  24. good, i’l use those

  25. i like the first 2 they recycle and help the environment

  26. i like the self watering planter thats awsome

  27. Ismell A. Lot // January 2, 2009 at 11:24 am // Reply

    I thought the SELF- WATERING PLANTER was interesting.

  28. What about a fish feeder using half of a empty milk jug. Poke/drill a hole in the cap, crumble the food, put food in top of jug, watch fish eat.

  29. Awsome

  30. card board orange juice cartons r better for bird feeders ’cause if they fall they decompose

  31. cool im in cubscouts i think we should do it

  32. willtron 4000 // November 1, 2008 at 4:37 pm // Reply


  33. We need something kooler like traps

  34. basketball101 // October 13, 2008 at 9:02 pm // Reply

    i did the second one today

  35. That is way too simple do something alout cooler!

  36. i really like the second one

  37. awsome i will do all 6

  38. eagle or bust // October 1, 2008 at 6:33 pm // Reply


  39. That self-watering planter was a great idea!

  40. I Love those ideas

  41. really cool i like th idea of the berry picker holder

  42. Do somthing COOLER

  43. TOO SIMPLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  44. i think all those 6 projects are good to do

  45. You have bright ideas in recycling used plastic jugs into practical use. Regards from the Philippines.


  47. i thought the bird feeder is a good idea

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