My galvanized watering cans were collected over the years from flea markets and antique malls, some European, but most made in USA. They’re a rag-tag bunch, complete with dents and missing roses. While I love to find them in mint condition with their roses intact, I’m fond of those that were well used, imagining all the flowers and gardens they watered. I hung part of my collection on the corner of my Potting Shed a couple of years ago, where a rain chain would hang, but to be decorative rather than functional.
I’ve had a lot of questions and emails about my watering can chain recently, and I realized I never did a post to be able refer you to.
Here’s some answers to your questions about the ‘chain gang’ ;) and how to put one together if you have a collection of watering cans, to hang along a garden fence or by a tool or garden shed.
I used a length of 10 foot chain I found at Lowe’s. The chain is light-duty and meant to hold 35 pounds, which means I’m probably close to maximum capacity with 12 watering cans hanging on it.
The chain hangs on a heavy-duty screw eye or threaded eye hook. I used a pair of pliers to open the first link in the chain to hang on the hook under the eave of the roof.
I used a set of metal shower curtain rings that I picked up at Walmart. The rings are clipped on the chain and flex to open and close to attach the handles of the watering cans.
The bottom of the chain is attached to the siding with another screw, so the watering cans are anchored and don’t bang around if there is a breeze.
I don’t usually have to worry about the cans filling up with water with it hanging under the eave. I positioned the watering cans at the bottom of the chain so they point down rather than up. After a storm or heavy rain, I’ll check the cans towards the bottom of chain and empty any water that collects.
If you live where you get a lot of rain, and worried about standing water breeding mosquitoes, you can use Mosquito Dunks. I use them in the summer months in my bird baths. They’re available at garden centers and online and kill mosquito larvae. They’re safe for use in fish ponds, bird baths and animal drinking troughs. Each dunk or “donut” works for 30 days and can be broken into pieces to treat smaller areas, like watering cans, flower pots or anywhere where water stands.
I’ve added flags to watering cans celebrate the Red, White and Blue for Independence Day. . .
And added greenery and pinecones to the watering cans to decorate for Christmas.
You can find vintage galvanized watering cans on eBay and Etsy as well as flea markets. New galvanized watering cans can be found at hardware stores and garden centers.
You can find more Watering Can Love, here.
Update: Momma Squirrel decided to build a nest in the top watering can.This particular watering can is also popular with birds in the spring and has a high occupancy rate as it has a small opening and is protected underneath the eave of the shed.
Read about our squirrel adventures and what to do do if you find abandoned baby squirrels, HERE.