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The Planet

How to Upcycle: Old Lightbulb into Terrarium

by Zara DeGroot

August 5, 2015

Terrariums are small, cute decorations, and you have probably wanted one at some point. Through the process of upcycling—reusing objects or materials to create a higher quality product—you now have access to a low-cost one, and more importantly, one that is better for the environment. Learn how to make a terrarium out of a lightbulb using supplies you might already have in your garage.

  • Pliers
  • Bolt
  • Sticky feet
  • Funnel
  • Rocks
  • Sand
  • Skewer
  • Scissors
  • Plant
  • Lightbulb

Step 1

Remove the electrical contact and the fuse and filament from the lightbulb. Use pliers to take off the electrical parts from the lightbulb. Use a bolt to clear out the bottom part of the bulb.

Step 2

Stick on self-adhesive rubber “feet” to the bottom of the lightbulb. With these, the bulb will be able to stand on its own.

Step 3

Use the funnel to pour the small rocks into the lightbulb, then follow with the sand. Once these are in, insert the plant clippings.

Step 4

Adjust the placement of everything inside the lightbulb using the skewer. To water your plant, you can use an eyedropper, or just drip some water in from the faucet. Water the plant whenever it looks drier than usual.

So next time you find yourself throwing out a lightbulb, think again. To learn more about improving recycling habits and what you can create using discarded objects, tune in for the new season of Human Resources on Pivot, airing Fridays at 10 p.m. ET/PT, starting on August 7.

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How to Upcycle: Old Lightbulb into Terrarium