August 20, 2013

DIY Geometric Dip Bowl Succulent Planters

Last week I posted this picture on Instagram:

I proudly proclaimed to the world (well, whoever follows me on Instagram) that I had lost my black thumb since I was able to keep that beautiful bouquet of flowers my mom gifted me alive for 2 weeks! Naivety at it's finest haha

Anyway, I wanted to take my newly found green thumb status a step further so I made a trio of geometric dip bowl succulent planters over the weekend:

All three of them took about an hour to make and cost $10.50 total! That hour can be cut down to about 15-20 minutes if you don't have to stop and take photos for your blog so keep that in mind if you're a non-blogger :)

Here's what you'll need to make a trio of your own (adjust accordingly if you only plan to make one or two):

Purchased supplies:
  • 3 dip bowls
    • I got mine at Target but I can't find them online. They're sold as a set of two in the college section for 99 cents! All 3 rang it at $1.50.
  • 3 succulents
    • I got mine at Home Depot for $2.98 each ($8.94 total).
  • Cactus soil
    • I got that huge bag of Miracle-Gro soil at Home Depot for $4.98 but I only used about a cup of soil total. Maybe, I didn't actually measure it out but you can't tell any soil is missing from the bag so I'm going to count that cup as 6 cents to make the total cost an even $10.50 or $3.50 each!
Free supplies:
  • Rocks/gravel, free from yard
  • Gardening gloves, borrowed from my mom
  • Spoon, free from cutlery drawer

Note: this project may cost you more than the prices I quoted depending on the supplies you need to purchase and where you purchase them from.

I grabbed a few pebbles from our front courtyard (decomposed granite if you're wondering) to create a small drainage layer on the bottom of the dip bowl:

I placed a few paper towels down on my workstation to catch any dirt from the succulents (the one below is a Hens and Chicks) and then I started to remove them from their plastic pots.

I gently pinched the pot all the way around to loosen the dirt and make it easier for the succulent to come out:

After it was out of its plastic pot, I added the extra dirt that fell out of the pot onto the paper towels into the dip bowl, carefully loosened the roots, and then transferred the succulent to the dip bowl:

I don't have any pictures of the planting process since my hands were covered in dirt but it's not hard! I set the succulent down in the dip bowl and then I gently pushed its dirt (soil?) down into the dip bowl.

If the dip bowl wasn't full enough, I'd spoon some of the cactus soil into to the dip bowl and then I'd gently pat everything down again. Repeat until your dip bowl is full of soil.

You can stop here if you'd like but I didn't like seeing the exposed dirt in the dip bowl so I went back out to my front courtyard and grabbed some extra pebbles to add to the top of the dirt.

I don't think it'll harm the succulents or their growth but I'm new to the planting world so please chime in if you know it will!

I pressed the rocks into the dirt so they wouldn't fall out of the dip bowl and then I gave the succulent a nice drink of water.

I love how the sculptural succulent looks in the geometric dip bowl:

I started planting the second succulent (an Aloe) the same way:

Here you can see how I pinched the pot to loosen the dirt before removing the succulent:

I don't think this one had been watered in a while because it came out in one piece with very little dirt spillage:

My aloe had 3 "arms" + a little green onion looking sprout that needed to be braced by some extra cactus soil. I used my spoon to fill any gaps around the plant with soil while also making sure to fill the dip bowl full enough so the arms would stand up straight:

I added some rocks like I did to the Hens and Chicks succulent above:

I love this little guy :)

My boyfriend said it looked like an island from above. I don't see it, do you?

I didn't need to use my gardening gloves to plant the above succulents but I did when I planted this spiky guy:

He sucked to plant (no pun intended):

After I got him out of the pot and into the dip bowl, I needed to fill the bowl with some extra soil:

My gloves were too thick and kept getting in the way so I took them off and decided to add the soil with my bare hands. Stupidest idea ever. I got stabbed several times and was very tempted to throw the whole thing in the trash. I'm happy I didn't though because the finished planter looks good!

It's even cuter from above ;)

I know I'm biased but I think these would make a great gift for teachers, co-workers, neighbors, a new homeowner, a hostess, friends and family, etc.

I kind of wish I would have used a gold Sharpie on the rim of the dip bowls to give them a little somethin' somethin' extra. Guess I know what I'm doing tonight haha

The dip bowls are made of melamine but they almost look ceramic!

They're my new favorite styling accessory :)

Who would you make one (or more) of these for? You can say yourself, I totally did ;)

I'm sharing this project on House of Hepworths!

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  1. Love those bowls! Looks like I will have to make a Target run today!! xo Kristin

    1. Thanks Kristin! The bowls are so versatile, I'm already thinking of other projects to make with them! :)

  2. Love them! I've also noticed some neon geometric bowls in the seasonal dish aisle that look awesome.

    1. Thanks Crystal! These bowls also came in black, neon orange, and neon yellow I believe. Maybe those are the ones you saw!

  3. I love the bowls! They look great! I need to jump on the succulent train. I need something to not kill :)

    1. Thanks Kenz! I'm hoping I can keep these guys alive. Succulents are supposedly hard to kill but I swear they start to shrivel up when I glance at them haha

  4. I had picked up some of these cute little geometric dishes at Target too . . . so far I only use them to display my candy (which I then quickly eat). These are cute as planters. The thing I have found with succulents is that they almost like to be ignored. Especially since you don't have a drainage hole at the bottom, be careful not to overwater or they will drown. Cheers - CT

    1. I like the candy storage idea! ;) Thanks for the watering tip! I have a couple of other succulents that I've almost killed from overwatering and their pots have a drainage hole so I'll have to be extra careful with these ones. Sometimes they just look so thirsty though!

  5. Caitlin, I love the new blog look! And your the bowls from Target super cute with those succulents! I am so jealous.

  6. Gorgeous! I love those bowls!

  7. Ummm hello pretty!!! Love this idea. I can't believe the bowls were only $.99! Every succulent I've planted indoors has died. Butt my outdoor succulents thrive! I've learned the def need drainage holes. The hate wet, soggy roots. Can't eat to pick these up. Thanks for sharing!!!

    1. $.99 for two so $.50 each! Isn't that crazy?! Somehow my succulents keep almost dying and then look alive and well again a few days later. It's weird haha I'll definitely have to remember to keep the watering to a minimum!

  8. Do you have the Target ASIN number?

    1. I'm not sure what that is, sorry! There's a bunch of numbers on the label though, I can list some for you or take a photo of the label if you think that'd help!

    2. Its the number that Target uses to check stock and availability...

  9. I love these! Such a cool way to repurpose those cool bowls.

  10. So true story...I went to do this (per Nick's suggestion) for the hostess gifts for my baby shower. Bought the bowls at Target (had to go to 2 Targets to find some). Then went to Lowes for the plants only to find some preplanted in some pretty decent containers. I went the lazy route. Upside I now have several sets of geometric bowls from Target that I will use for myself later!!

  11. These succulents look so cute. I tried growing succulents before, but I've never had much luck. I'd be thrilled if you'd come on over to Pink Recipe Box and link up at Creative Wednesdays:

  12. How did I miss this post? Those bowls are nice. Will be on the look out at our local Target.

    Vidya @ Whats Ur Home Story


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