Plan for weekend DIY: making hypertufa pots and garden art

Plan for weekend DIY: making hypertufa pots and garden art

As I look for inspiration (and a way to become more interested in my garden), I realized that finding some DIY projects to spruce up my yard might be just the key.

As I browse for garden ideas, I find myself drawn to fancy-looking concrete and stone planters and then stories about something called hypertufa.


It's a substance that looks like stone but is made with Portland cement, peat moss and perlite, which means it's lightweight.

I mentioned trying hypertufa to Rob the other day, and he said we could try it, but of course we'll need to have molds.

I've done some more browsing since and have found three ideas I'd like to try:

- DIY garden spheres, using old light globes (I'm hoping to find some at the Habitat ReStore)

- actual hypertufa planters (I'm wondering if we couldn't use some of my favorite galvanized tubs as molds)

- a tabletop for a small wrought iron table in our yard that's current topped by a scrap of wood.

Have any of you readers ever worked with hypertufa? Did you find it to be easier or more difficult than you expected?

Sept. 18, 2012 edit: It took us five months but we finally made hypertufa. Read more about that here.


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rsp wrote on April 29, 2012 at 6:04 pm

I've wanted to make some containers out of that mix for a while now. I'm never could decide on molds, and I also just wanted some sculpture. Really tempted to make some people out of copper pipe but I'm afraid they'll "walk" off. 

Meg Dickinson wrote on May 03, 2012 at 3:05 pm
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I know, I love copper but hate to spend money on it for that very reason. I've found copper spray paint to be a nice alterntive, although it doesn't get that nice patina.

ReallyOldGuy wrote on May 04, 2012 at 1:05 pm
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Anything really valuable left in the yard (especially the 'front' yard) can easily be secured using a long (at least 3 feet) length of rebar with an 'eye' bent (using heat from a small torch) into the end.  drive the rebar into the ground next to your scupture and fasten your sculpture to the rebar 'eye'.  Theives and potential yard robbers will find it next to impossible to lift the rebar (along with the sculpture) out of the ground.  A large bolt-washers-and-nut combination will secure the artwork.  I recomment 'staking' the bolt threads after it has all been assembled so the nut cannot be removed from the bolt.  The only drawbacks that I can think of are the work involved and the fact that someone may 'destroy' your artwork when he/she finds their thieving efforts foiled...of course, we can't prevent vandalism from happening, but it will prevent theft.

Meg Dickinson wrote on May 04, 2012 at 1:05 pm
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Wow, that is a well-thought-out strategy. Thanks!