Quick Fix: AC Drain Container Garden

AC drain container garden papyrus

Do you have an Air conditioner drain pipe in a random place? With 100+ degree temperatures during the summer, this innocent little AC pipe has pumped out a ton of water. Creating a grimy, and muddy mess around our house foundation and side yard patio.

Ac drain garden 002

We tried a couple extenders, but with playful dogs running about the backyard, they just didn’t work.

(tennis ball + running puppy + pipe extender = cracked AC drain pipe)

Luckily we had this large vintage metal wash tub left over from our wedding that we used for part of the decor and never sold.


I knew I was going to find use for it in the backyard, but had no idea it would fit so perfectly under our AC drain pipe. Another bonus is the tub leaks from the bottom and provides some drainage but less grime and less water.

Why not use it as a container garden?

The only challenge was to find plants that could stand low drainage, moist soil, but also looked tropical. Luckily Green Acres nursery in Sacramento has a wide variety of plants and fairly educated staff who steered us toward papyrus.papyrus

This plant can reach 13 to 16 ft tall, under the right conditions! (Admittedly, we may need to transplant it later in order to reach those heights.) It loves moist, shallow, and warm soil. As for the dogs, they sniff it, but pretty much leave it alone. However we will  wrap some chicken wire around it when the dogs are in the backyard without supervision. (Just in case a bored puppy wants a new chew toy and papyrus supposedly can be toxic to dogs) We’ve learned from experience that chicken wire around the plants normally does the job, and until new plantings are no longer at “dog mouth level.” Luckily our AC drain pipe is in a wind and elements sheltered side yard so we’re hoping this plant will love its new home. For now a perfect plant and quick fix as our AC drain container garden. Grow little guy,  grow!

AC drain container garden papyrus