What can I reuse or recycle to make a trug?

I’ve been getting more and more interested in wild food lately – we’ve been trying different things while walking the dog in the woods behind our house and on Sunday, we went on a wonderful Wild Food Foray organised by Slow Food West Yorkshire. Led by medical herbalist Jesper Launder, we spent just over three hours pottering around the River Wharfe just north of Barden Bridge and tasted more than a dozen different plants, and also went crayfishing (for nasty invasive signal crayfish) – which was a lot of fun. (I’m going to do a full write up of all the things we tasted on my personal blog soon.)

Anyway, long & short of it is, between wild food collecting and the hopefully bountiful harvest from our garden, a trug would be really useful for carrying stuff back up to the house – a Sussex trug style basket like the one pictured rather than those big rubbery plastic bins with handles. Up to now, I’ve mostly just either taken so few leaves that I could easily carry them in my hands or used shopping bags/a colander when I’ve headed down to get a larger amount of, say, wild garlic – but a trug would be useful for carrying large amounts of longer things, letting them lie flat instead of crunching them up.

One recycled trug idea I’ve seen is made using an old car tyre – the tyre is cut into sections (sixths?) and rope handles are attached, et voila! instant trug. I’ve also seen old fruit/veg boxes made into trugs with addition of a central handle.

But before I start hacking up John’s spare, I thought it might be interesting to hear if anyone has any other suggestions. Might something like paper mache even work? It doesn’t need to be that strong and I guess it could be varnished/painted enough to make it waterproof enough (it wouldn’t be sitting out in the rain but the plants might be damp/dewy.)

Any other ideas?

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6 Responses to “What can I reuse or recycle to make a trug?”

  1. Cipollina says:

    I’ve made a veggie caddy using bits of pallet, a bit of mesh left over from making a compost screen, and a twig for handle. If you google “garden hod”, several pictures come up showing similar designs.

  2. mommacat says:

    You could use an old cookie sheet or 9 x 13 cake pan or large broiler pan. Just attatch straps for handles and it would be nice to line it with a piece of carpet remnant to keep the delicate items from getting bruised.

  3. mommacat says:

    Do you own one of those really big roasting pans that are used for cooking a Thanksgiving turkey? Turn it into a multitasker by sewing a pretty cover for it, and voila’!

  4. Nome says:

    Paper mache is a great idea! In fact, I think I’ll make one myself.

    The way I would do it is to find some solid shape to use as a mould – a big roasting dish is a good idea – and smother it with vaseline before covering it in paper mache. Will find something solid to give the handle its shape as well or it will end up crinkly. You’ll want 8-12 layers of paper, then take it off the mould, trim the edges straight, put a layer or two on the inside to cover up the greasiness from the vaseline, and a layer or two wrapping round the edge to strengthen it.

    I’m so doing this!

  5. Susan says:

    What about a infant baby carrier? The plastic kind with handle (which folds down when not in use). They often can’t be resold at thrift stores, and end up in the trash. They’re designed to carry delicate treasures and are waterproof.

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