Thrifting for Plant Stuff

Thrifting for Plant Stuff

When I look around at some of my coolest houseplant accessories, the majority of them were someone else’s first. At local thrift stores I’ve found vases, drip trays, pots, shelves, plant stands, baskets, and even some really useful tools. If you’re a plant parent that isn’t thrifting, you could be missing out for a few reasons. 

Pots and plant accessories can be really expensive, but things found thrifting are a lot more affordable and unique than what you’d find at a garden center. Thrifting is a great way to help out the environment too, since most of the things there would end up as trash if they don’t find a new home. Also, not only do glass drip trays look a little nicer, it’s an easy way to reduce the amount of plastic you use in your home.

90% of the non-living things in this photo are from a thrift store.

Wandering the aisles without a set plan and getting creative with the things you come across can be a really good time, either by yourself or with a buddy. When I have the time and energy, I hit every area to make sure I check out everything.

However, thrift stores are all different and there’s always a lot to look through, so I understand if it feels overwhelming. Knowing the spots where you’re likely to score the good stuff can help you focus your search and relieve some stress. This post will guide you to the places to look with examples of things you might find in each, helping you better formulate your plan for the next time you head out thrifting.


My first stop is always the trinkets/miscellaneous area. In Goodwill stores, it’s usually one of the last shelves in the row. In this section I look for vases that I can use for propagating, pots or things you can use as pots, and other random things you can use in the context of houseplants. Some of the cooler things I’ve found here include the following:

Photo 1: 5” clay pot with moon and stars
Photo 2: I found a whole bag of these stones, they’re great to add to the bottom of pots to promote drainage or for a humidity tray.
Photo 3: This square planter that this Global Green Pothos is in was once a tissue box cover.
Photo 4: This little vase I’ve used to propagate in used to be a perfume jar.

Next up is the glass area. This is where most of the vases good for propagating will be, as well as things you can use as drip trays to catch water that drains from the bottom of your pots. Some of the things I’ve found here include:

Photo 1: This pretty glass dish currently catches water that drains from my string of pearls.
Photo 2: This amber colored vase has held space for many a propagation.
Photo 3: This vase was a recent find and has its first propagation in it!
Photo 4: The little glass dish is a perfect drip tray under small plants, and the pineapple stand was also a thrift score from a miscellaneous section like I described above.

The aisle with dishes typically follows, were you’ll find old serving dishes or plates that you can use as drip trays. Some of the bowls or cute coffee mugs can be used as a cover pots, too.

Photo 1: A cake serving tray that’s a perfect little stand/drip tray
Photo 2: This old gravy boat (I think?) has been home for this little Ogre ear plant for a couple of years now (he’s due for a repot)
Photo 3: This glass bowl has been perfect to catch water draining from this Rhipsalis dude and looks great hanging up like this

An aisle I make sure I always hit is the basket/wood aisle. I’ve found a ton of really cute plant accessories in this section that I use as cover pots, little plant stands, and even wall hanging baskets that I’ve lined and put plants in. Don’t skip this aisle!

Photo 1: Little hanging basket turned planter
Photo 2: Large basket that’s made a perfect cover pot for this ZZ Raven
Photo 3: Small basket that I can’t wait to use as a cover pot
Photo 4: A cute little plant stand

One of the last few aisles will be metalware. I haven’t found a ton here so if I’m short on time I’ll skip this one, but it can be worth a quick browse as there have been some cool finds. These are things I’ve scored from this area:

Photo 1: A metal bowl that makes a great drip tray
Photo 2: Another wall hanging planter
Photo 3: A cool metal bowl that’s been home for my chain of hearts for years

The last area I make sure I hit is furniture. Good, affordable plant shelves can be hard to come by, and I’ve found a few things here that I’m still pretty stoked about. 

Thrifting for houseplant accessories is one of my favorite things to do. I love getting creative and thinking about ways I can use things that were meant for other purposes in the context of house plants. It’s really exciting to come across something perfect, like when I scored that corner shelf pictured above. The unique things you would only find thrifting can add so much to your space and really make your indoor jungle yours.


It’s important to note that the total for all of the things listed throughout this entire post is under $100, including the furniture. Plants can already be expensive, the accessories you get for them don’t have to be. Don’t skip out on your local thrift stores next time you’re shopping for plant stuff!

If this inspires you to go thrifting for your plants and you find something you’re stoked about, shoot me a message or tag @slowgreendeath on Instagram. I’d love to share stoke with you and get inspired by your creativity!

Happy thrifting and may all your plants’ deaths be Slow and Green,






Original post date: May 12, 2023

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