DIY Cement Planter

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For under $15!  

This DIY cement planter is very simple to make and will hold up over the years.

Cement planters at the store range from $30-$80 depending on the size/style, so making this yourself for under $15 is super thrifty!   

You will need:

  • 2 – 10 lb. bags Cement. I prefer Quikrite Mortar Mix (it’s smooth). It costs $3 per 10 lb. bag. Buy 2.
  • Long rectangular plastic planter (find a sturdy one). I bought mine for $8.
  • Paint
  • 2 half gallon milk cartons (cut open on one side)
  • Bucket (for mixing cement)
  • Drill (to drill drainage holes)
  • Duck tape (if you spray paint)

How to:

  1. Use butter or use a cooking spray, liberally coat the entire inside of the plastic planter.
  2. Mix cement with water to consistency of peanut butter. (wear a mask/gloves- don’t inhale cement dust)
  3. Pour cement, when 2 inches near the top (see far right picture) sink in the milk cartons and put a brick in each to weigh them down. Add more cement if needed.You don’t want to sink the cartons so far that they touch the bottom (leave about 2 inches at the bottom) but you don’t want it not to be deep enough.  You need it deep enough to plant in!
  4. After about 15 minutes, check on it, if the carton “floats” up at all, simply sink it back into the cement deeper. Check again in 15.  After that just leave it.
  5. Cover with plastic or a trash bag. Cement needs time to “cure” without drying too fast.
  6. Wait at least 4-5 days. Then gently remove from plastic planter.  The butter or cooking spray helps it come out easier. Definitely use the butter or spray!

Line with duck tape, spray paint or paint as desired. Drill one drainage hole in each section.

Find a cute quote or saying and hand paint it on. I used acrylic paint for the wording and butterfly details. Spray with a clear coat to seal… Or no seal for a weathered look as the paint chips.

You are done! Total time spent- 20 minutes for the cement part. 5 for spray paint, 30 minutes for detail painting.

I washed out the plastic planter very well and it held up fine, so I was able to reuse it to plant some herbs and placed it in our garden!

I had extra cement leftover so I made some stepping stones (use an old round cake pan or any disc shaped “mold.”)

Any questions- feel free to ask. I’ve been working with cement for over a year now. I love making flower planters and votives!

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