How to Make a Cactus Cut-Out Vertical Garden

Can't get enough of tiny succulents? This hanging cactus planter is the perfect way to show off your green thumb and DIY skills.

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

Can’t get enough of tiny succulents? This DIY cactus planter is the perfect spot to show off your green thumb. Just print out the template and build!

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Materials Needed

  • (1) 9" x 16" shallow craft crate
  • (1) 1" x 10" x 3/4" pine board
  • printable template
  • jigsaw
  • drill and 1/2" drill bit
  • sanding block
  • 9" x 16" piece of chicken wire
  • wire snips
  • exterior wood stain
  • flat-bristle paintbrush
  • old, clean rag
  • tape measure
  • pencil
  • hammer
  • (6-8) 1 1/2" brad nails
  • wood glue
  • drop cloth
  • Spanish moss
  • assortment of tiny succulents
  • 2' rope (optional)
  • hanging hardware (optional)

Measure + Cut

Measure your crate, then have a pine board cut to fit flush on top of the crate. (Our crate is 9-by-16 inches, so our board was cut to that dimension, too.)

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

Step 1- Crate & Board Measure your crate, then have a board cut to fit flush on top of the crate. Our crate is 9x16 inches, so our board was cut to that dimension, too.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Print, Cut + Trace

Download, print and cut out your design (Image A). (We chose a trendy cactus.) Set the template on your board in the position you like, then trace around the template with a pencil (Image B).

Drill Pilot Hole 

Before using a jigsaw to cut out your design, use a drill with a 1/2-inch bit to make a pilot hole.

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

Step 4- Drill Pilot Hole Before using a jig saw to cut out the cactus shape, you’ll need a starter hole or “pilot hole” to introduce the jig blade. Use a drill with half-an-inch inch bit to make this hole.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Cut + Sand

Using a jigsaw, cut out your design. Stick as closely to the traced pencil lines as possible (Image A). Then, gently sand any rough edges with a fine-grit sanding block (Image B).

Stain Surfaces

Wipe the crate and board clean, then stain it your desired color. Brush on the water-based stain, then wipe the excess off with a clean rag. Allow the crate and board to dry before moving on to the next steps.

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

Step 6- Stain It Wipe the crate and board clean, then stain it your desired color. Brush on the water- based stain, then wipe excess stain off with a clean rag. Allow to dry before moving to next steps.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Fill With Moss

Place the moss in the crate, filling all the way to the top. Tuck any loose ends back into the crate.

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

Step 7- Fill with Moss Place moss in the crate, filling to the top. Tuck any loose ends back into the crate.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Add Chicken Wire

Once the moss is tucked inside, cut a piece of chicken wire that matches your crate dimensions. Once the wire is cut, carefully tuck the cut ends down into the crate so they're secure.

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

Step 8- Add Chicken Wire Once moss is tucked inside, cut a piece of chicken wire that matches your crate dimensions. Use wire snips or strong utility scissors for this. Once wire is cut, carefully tuck cut ends of wire down into the crate so it’s secure.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Attach the Top

With the chicken wire and moss in place, it’s time to place the lid on the crate. First, run a bead of wood glue along the crate’s top edge (Image A). Then, place the top board in place and secure with brad nails (Image B).

Plant Succulents

To plant the tiny succulents, you may need to snip some of the wire here and there with wire snips. Plant the succulents tightly together, mixing up colors and textures. (Before hanging, be sure to moisten moss and plants with a spray bottle.)

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

DIY Moon & Stars Vertical Succulent Planter

Step 10- Plant Succulents To plant the tiny succulents, you may need to snip some of the wire here and there. Plant them tightly together, mixing up colors and textures. And before hanging be sure to moisten moss and plants with a spray bottle.

Photo by: Tomas Espinoza

Tomas Espinoza

Add Rope/Hardware (Optional)

This vertical planter is super versatile; it can sit on a table or hang on a wall. We ran a rope through the top for a rustic look, but you could add hanging hardware to the back of the crate if you prefer.

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