Earth Day is right around the corner, and I’ve got a fun repurposing project you can do at home to green up your garden space! These lanterns turned DIY succulent planters are easy to make (even the kids can help) and they’re also great in small spaces as long as they get some sun.
Succulents are hard to kill (they typically need 4-6 hours of sunlight, and don’t over-water them) and they can usually be planted in shallower spaces than other house plants. That makes them perfect for my house, where I tend to kill just about everything else, haha. There are lots of choices available, but today I’m planting Hens and Chicks (the more common name for Sempervivum – the “live forever” plant) in these repurposed DIY succulent planter lanterns.
Supplies needed to make your own DIY succulent planter lanterns:
- Lanterns (I used these black votive lanterns).
- Regular Mouth Mason Jar Ring.
- Potting Soil.
- Small Succulent Plants.
Now, if you have big doubts about keeping even succulents alive you can also choose some of the great faux succulents out there instead. But because it’s nearly Earth Day, we’re using the real green in today’s DIY succulent planter tutorial!
First, set up your work station outdoors, or cover your table with newspaper or plastic to keep it clean, because dirt is dirty! I just laid out a plastic bag to keep things tidy.
Carefully remove the glass from your lantern. That will give your plant a little more space to grow, and make the whole planter less fragile. Gently bend the metal prongs that hold the glass in place with pliers, and carefully remove the glass. You may want to wear protective gloves to be safe during this step.
Next, add a mason jar ring to the bottom of your lantern. You don’t need the lid itself, just the ring (and chances are, you already have one leftover from your last mason jar craft, right?) Succulents prefer to have good drainage, so a loose ring in the bottom of your lantern will allow the water to flow away from the roots, while holding the soil inside. Alternately, you could use any short base that fits your lantern, as long as it has drainage holes, but the 3″ regular mouth ring is a perfect fit in the bottom of my 3″ square lantern.
Fill the lid loosely with soil, and plant your succulent plant. Be sure to cover the roots with soil. If some soil spills into the lantern, that’s okay! But you want the majority of it to be inside the ring, for your plants.
Use big or small plants – whatever you like! I filled my lanterns with both sizes. You can also mix and match if you have space. I am going to be honest here and admit that I didn’t leave my plants much room to grow. Chances are, they will need to be transplanted, or at least have the shoots (the “chicks”) removed and put in a separate container garden later on this season. But for this spring, they do make for beautiful decor in the space that I have them in!
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Adrianne is a writer, artist, designer, wife, and mom of 2 kids. She blogs at happyhourprojects.com where the theme is tutorials and recipes that can be made in an hour or less. Her favorite projects are jewelry-making, paper crafts, and recycled crafts. She participates annually in ArtPrize, an international art competition, and she’s the author of the book DIY T-Shirt Crafts: 50 Ways to Recycle a T-Shirt (August 2015).