DIY Watering Can

Transform your milk jug into a watering can.

| June 2018

  • “The Garden Classroom” by Cathy James offers a whole year of outdoor play and learning ideas—however big or small your garden.
    Cover courtesy Roost Books

The Garden Classroom (Roost Books, 2015) by Cathy James is packed with garden-based activities that promote science, math, reading, writing, imaginative play, and arts and crafts. Every garden offers children a rich, sensory playground, full of interesting things to discover and learn about. This project will have you saving your milk container to create a kid-friendly waterer.

Children love to water plants. Generally this is good news, and watering is a helpful chore the children can take on in the garden. Sometimes, though, overenthusiastic watering can be bad news — plants can become waterlogged and seedlings can rot away. Sometimes seedlings can be damaged in a deluge, and sometimes, especially in a class garden, you simply don’t have enough watering cans to go around. This DIY watering can with a rose head could be the ideal solution. Made from a plastic milk bottle or similar carton, it’s free and a great way to upcycle your junk into something practical. It’s easy to make and holds just the right amount of water, so it’s not too heavy for young children, and everyone can take a turn at watering without causing a flood.


  • 1-quart plastic milk or juice bottle with a lid
  • Craft knife or scissors


  1. Start by washing out your milk bottle. We use a quart-size bottle, which gives enough room to fill with a good amount of water without the bottle’s being too heavy.
  2. Use a knife or a pair of scissors to make small holes in the bottle’s lid. Give the knife a little wiggle to create a hole rather than a slit, to allow the water to come out freely. Always consider safety: this might be a job for an adult.
  3. Remove the bottle top to fill your new watering can with water, pop the lid back on, and you’re ready to go. The handle on the bottle makes it comfortable to hold, and if necessary, a gentle squeeze can help the water come out.

More from The Garden Classroom:

From The Garden Classroom by Cathy James, © 2015 by Cathy James. Reprinted by arrangement with Roost Books, an imprint of Shambhala Publications, Inc. Boulder, CO.

Mother Earth News Fair Schedule 2019


Next: April, 27-28 2019
Asheville, NC

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!


Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters