DIY Upcycled Gas canister planter

Text and Images by Gus Whitby

Whilst ultralight gas-based appliances offer lightweight and incredibly flexible cooking, the trade off is managing the plethora of quarter-full non-refillable cartridges at the conclusion of a trip. Whilst I’m very careful to ensure the proper disposal of spent canisters, I thought I’d spare this slightly larger example and upcycle it into something a little more useful; a distinctly ‘outdoorsy’ herb planter.

Caution: When working with metal you can encounter many a hazardous edge from the item or the tools you work with. Please proceed with care.


1 Gas canister

Angle grinder/hacksaw/sharp enough to cut through the canister

Enamel paint


Some rubber tubing


Houseplant of your choice

Step-by-step guide

1. If you’re starting with a fresh canister, vent remaining gas and pierce top so that it’s safe to be cut into. JetBoil produces a very handy gadget for assisting with this that I’d encourage you to own if you use a gas-based cooker that relies on these canisters.

2. Lop the top off. I initially tried my luck with a rather blunt hacksaw but the quicker method was to hand it off to Joe Woods who made light work of it with an angle grinder. Cheers mate!

3. I didn’t want the bare metal inside rusting so I gave the inside a wipe with some rubbing alcohol, keyed the surface with sandpaper and gave the inside of the canister 3 coats of enamel paint.

4. You’ll likely be left with a rather sharp edge on the top of your gas canister. To prevent future tears from cutting yourself, make a slit along the side of some rubber tubing and use it to cover the sharp edge.

5. Plant your herb of choice. Pictured: Basil. Jury is out on how this will go without drainage holes. I lined the bottom of the canister with crushed gravel to create a ‘drainage layer’ before adding soil (pilfered from the allotment of ex-Open Airist Paul Dogget). Fingers crossed!

6. Voila! Now you have a trendy new herb pot and a pleasant smell to your kitchen!

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