Plastic containers that plants come in can be recycled in Austin, Texas. If you recycle them they should be rinsed and dry, free of dirt and plant material.
Some cities don’t accept black plastic. Some cities don’t accept certain numbers of plastic. Please check with your local city department or contractor. Please do not ask the truck driver and unfortunately a city general information line may be incorrect as well. Try to get to the actual city department that provides recycling or the contractor’s customer service.
A “better and higher use” for the plastic pots would be to see if the nursery/plant place you purchased them will take them back to re-use them, if a community garden has room or is willing to store them for use, or a neighbor may be interested.
A list of community and senior gardens on City of Austin land is here. Check your local city to see if they have a similar link.
The Coalition of Austin Community Gardens (CACG) lists tons of local gardens that may be able to reuse these containers.
A lot of plants can be easily separated or propagated. Talk to your neighbors and friends to see if they have plants to share that you are interested in that can be transferred to containers and pots you already have.
Don’t forget that community gardens can be a great place to donate plant, garden and landscaping tools, supplies and equipment that you no longer use or need. If you are downsizing, retiring, moving, this can be a great opportunity to help your local community. Always contact the group first to see if they have space and/or need for what you’d like to donate.
Featured image courtesy of Beth Hamilton, Mueller Community Garden.