Wine Bottle Garden

A couple years ago, I was inspired after a trip to the Tucson Botanical Gardens. They had a small, shady flower bed that was bordered by empty bottles in the Nuestro Jardin area. I loved the way the light sparkled off of the colorful glass and decided to make a wine bottle garden in our yard.

The trickiest part in making my wine bottle garden was getting the bottles. My border is made up of 80 bottles, and it took months, and the help of a number of friends, to collect enough.


  • empty wine or liquor bottles
  • glass paint (optional)
  • shovel
  • dirt


Before you go outside, wash all your bottles in hot, soapy water to remove the labels. If there is still a residue of adhesive, you can use Vaseline or no stick cooking spray and a scratchy sponge to remove it from the glass.

I had a number of clear bottles that I chose to paint brightly with permanent glass paint after they were cleaned. If you choose, you can paint clear bottles a solid color or with a multi-colored design. Follow the directions on the paint packaging to cure the paint. Usually your painted glass gets baked in the oven to make the paint adhere permanently.

It's time to grab the shovel and head outside.

You'll need to know where you are going to place your flower bed. You can use your shovel to trace out the perimeter. I made my garden in the shape of a rectangle, but this border would look nice if it was curved. Dig a 6-inch deep trench along the perimeter. For me, this was the trickiest part because we have super hard caliche clay in our yard. I had to use the hose to wet down where I was digging to soften the soil.

Begin placing the bottles, neck down. Make sure the entire neck and part of the bottler is in the trench. Pack soil firmly around the bottles as you go so they don't tip over. Fill your flower bed with good quality soil or compost. If you are able, you can also add irrigation lines.

I always have fresh basil and oregano growing in my garden. On Wednesday I'll show you how I make the dirt for my garden. You read that right. It may not be a glamorous craft, but I do make my own dirt!



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The Chilly Dog: Wine Bottle Garden
Wine Bottle Garden
The Chilly Dog
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