7.18.2015

Upcycled juice container and burlap planter

Here's my latest and greatest DIY I wrote for LowerLonsdale.ca - how to make a burlap milk carton planter.

Nothing says fun like reaching into our recycle bins and making awesome stuff out of 'junk'. This is the perfect summertime upcycling project. I have this recent addiction to getting doubly green - repurposing junk and making projects that use soil and succulents. Total win win!

What you'll need:
  • 2 strips of burlap
  • juice or milk container (preferably a 1 or 2 litre container)
  • glue gun and glue sticks
  • scissors and/or X-Acto knife
  • cactus soil
  • succulents - trimmings are A-OK
  • buttons, junk jewelry, ribbon (optional)

Get your supplies on hand. You can either find burlap at Michaels or drop by your local coffee roaster for a burlap sac. There are a few places you can go to for succulents - Dykhof Nurseries, GardenWorks, your local florist or nursery. And containers are easy - use empty juice or milk containers from your recycle bin.

Now we're good to go!



Find a container the width you want. Preferably a 1 or 2 litre container. You can easily adjust the height when you trim the container.



Measure and mark a line for the height you want for your planter. I measured a 5" height for mine.



Use an X-Acto knife to cut along the measured line. We want to create an opening for the planter and remove the top of the container. Cut slowly and carefully so you don't damage the container or yourself.



Next we'll cut out our strips of burlap. We want two strips - measure them at the same width as the container panels plus add 1-2". The length should be enough to cover one side panel, the bottom panel and the opposite side panel plus have enough extra burlap to fold over the edges.



Now plug in your trusty glue gun and we're ready to add the burlap to the container. Fold the short end of the burlap over the rim. Dab glue to hold in place then wrap the burlap on the outer panel then bottom and along the opposite outer panel of the container. Dab glue as you add the burlap then fold the short edge over the opposite rim and glue in place.



Glue the sides of the long edges so they cover the fold between panels. Dab glue to hold burlap in place. Add the second strip of burlap to the other side to cover the whole container. Fold the sides of the long edges so they align with the panels of the container. This creates a clean, professional finish plus covers the edges of the first piece of burlap.



Once your container is wrapped in burlap you're ready to add the soil and succulent. I used cactus soil for the container as recommended by the person I talked to at Dykhof Nurseries.



You can either plant a couple of different succulents or one. You can even use trimmings - these should root with a bit of TLC. Don't water too much as succulents need minimal water. Also the container will have no drainage holes for the excess water to drain through.

And you're done! It looks awesome, doesn't it? And doesn't take long at all.



Feel free to add some bling - maybe ribbon, old buttons or jewelry. You can even stencil a design on the burlap using a Sharpie.



This is a fun DIY that's the perfect green gift for family and friends. Enjoy!

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