How can I reuse or recycle coconut shells?

Coconut shellsFor reasons that seemed fun at the time, a few of years ago we halved and scooped out some coconuts. We clip-clopped up and down the street and around the house Monty Python style for a bit then the shells went in the cellar. There they stayed for a year or so then we found them, clip-clopped some more and then cellared them again.

Now, after a third bout of clip-clopping for the amusement of local children, the empty shells are now living in the garden and are really begging to be reused to save them from involvement in more repeat attempts at “humour”.

Any suggestions of things to do with them?

(Wonderful picture by minmax, c/o – because ours were too soggy to photograph well)

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21 Responses to “How can I reuse or recycle coconut shells?”

  1. sarar says:

    I seem to remember, back int he day, they used them to make bird feeders on Blue Peter. I can’t quite remember how they did it but think they used fat to hold the seeds, then hung it from a tree.


  2. dotCompost says:

    yeah, that’s all I could think of, but, Like you, I dunno how to make ’em :O(

  3. bev says:

    You can use them as interesting wall-mounted or hanging plant pots. Drill a hole or two in the bottom for drainage and then eitgher screw to a wall/fence/tree or drill some more holes at the top so you can thread twine through or something then you can hang them like little mini hanging baskets. If you wanted to get advanced, you could bolt three ofr four half-shells together and then hang them up – giving you three/four separate pots to plant in – great for plants that would take over if they were all in the same hanging basket. I haven’t tried this yet but next time I have a coconut in the house, I will – it sounds like it could me quite useful and interesting.

    Another gardening response – I think I must come off as a gardening obsessive on here! LOL!

  4. Sandra says:

    Coconut bra? :)

    Especially for a luau or halloween…

  5. Jan Cook says:

    You could sell them to me (very cheap) so that I can make them into bird houses?

  6. Ricky says:

    They make good bongs. Also known as a chalice. There are a few guides out there on the internet. Ours works perfectly!

  7. Brenda says:

    you could melt wax into them and make them into candle holders(not forgetting the wick also. Quite a topic of chat at the bbq

  8. Robyn says:

    If you still have them, we are looking for coconut halves to make bird feeders at a brownie pack holiday? would pay postage!

  9. Erin says:

    Here is a really great way to recycle your young thai coconut shell. I made a coconut bowl!

  10. Anthony says:

    Drill holes in them and make soap dishes

  11. coconut eater says:

    If you can find a way to smash them up into bits, you can use them as mulch. They’re very good for the soil to help replenish nutrients, minerals, and help the soil retain water.

  12. M Coconut says:

    Young Thai coconuts are dipped in bleach and chemicals after the green covering is taken off, to keep them from rotting before they are shipped to the U.S. I have seen websites recommending you keep the plastic wrap on them when cutting them and removing the water and fresh coconut meat. For this reason, I am wondering if it is safe to re-use fresh young coconut shells for any purpose – mainly because they are treated in Thailand before being shipped, and the chemicals used are unmonitored and not under any controls. Has anyone else heard of this? Thanks!

  13. mark says:

    in my country we weave nets from coconut shells

  14. Jatin Shah says:

    you can make bowl and bags from empty shell.

  15. Susan B says:

    In Goa (and probably other parts of India) they make excellent ladles by fixing handles onto coconut shells.

  16. it seems there is endless uses for coconut shells if you look around! i like mixing the coconut fiber in potting soil mixes

  17. Dianne says:

    In Tahiti I have seen the husks piled around the bottom of vanilla vines – around the bottom of the posts that the vine grow on. This provides humidity And moisture to the plant. I wonder if I could use them around the bases of my tropical fruit trees such as mango and avocado to keep the soil moisture in. I live on the dryer side of the island. Anyone have experience with this? I have a source for the husks, but they are difficult to make smaller than halves. Maybe they would be mosquito magnets?

    • Priscilla says:


      I’m Priscilla from Ghana

      We have a lot of coconut here. Unfortunately, not much is made of the shells and other things after drinking the water.

      I would love to go into recycling of the coconut shells.
      I would appreciate it if I could be given step by step directions into how to recycle them into various products.

      Thank you.

  18. DavidAJ says:

    The restoration of some delicate items requires that paint be removed. Where chemicals cannot be used, and ‘sand’ blasting does too much damage the abrasive used is crushed coconut shells, or sometimes walnut shells. The shells need to be reduced to a granule the size of coarse coffee granules but there is a supplier in UK, find them and recycling is possible.

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