DIY Cup Garden




About: Hey, I'm Muhaimina! A crazy craft addict! Obsessed with swirls and polka dots... Love green craft and rustic home decors... and Instructables is pretty much my second home!

I've started indoor gardening and I must say, it's really addictive! But what's fun in putting all the plants in plain pots? So I decided to make a cup garden. I've been wanting to make a fairy garden for a long time but made something quite similar this time. Might try to make a fairy garden next time.

Best thing about this cup garden is that I used cactus, succulent and wall plants, which require very low water and care. You can take it outside easily for a little sunlight and it's a great candy to the eye!

I'll take you step by step to making a cup garden of your own.

Check out the ible!


Step 1: Materials Needed

To make this cup garden you'll need:

  1. Old cup and saucer
  2. Small rocks and mixed soil
  3. Cactus and succulents
  4. Wall moss and plants
  5. Wooden crafts sticks or twigs
  6. Craft glue or hot glue gun
  7. X-acto knife and cutting pliers
  8. Ruler and pencil
  9. Mosaic stones

Step 2: Collecting the Pot

You can use any kind of pot you want but lets try something different.

I'm using an old cup and saucer for my mini garden. You can drill a hole at the bottom of the cup for drainage or use another technique, check out the next step to find out.

The size of the cup would depend on the number and size of the plats and accessories you'll be using. The one I used wasn't too big nor too small, worked out perfect!

Step 3: Preparing the Pot

Gather some small rocks and mixed soil, do not use sand,

Fill the bottom of the cup with the small rocks. Fill one third of the cup with rocks.

Now fill the rest of the cup with the mixed soil. Keep the soil level a cm below the edge of the cup.

Keep the pot aside and lets create the accessories.

Step 4: DIY Mini Garden Accessories

I'm using wooden craft sticks to make a mini bench, ladder and fence. While you're making the accessories keep in mind that the sizes of the accessories should be proportionate to the cup size and plants.

Use cutting pliers or x-acto knife to cut the sticks.

Measure the height of the cup, add 2 cm to that and cut 2 sticks of that size. These are the side rails of the ladder. Cut the rungs as many as you need to make the ladder, I had to cut 6 pieces. Now place the side rails on a flat surface and simply glue the ring pieces on them. Allow the glue to dry.

For the bench you'll need to prepare sticks for the legs, seat and back side. I used 4 pieces for the seat, 4 pieces for the legs and 5 pieces for the back. Cut a small piece of paper and glue the 4 sticks for the seats on it. Now turn it over and glue the 4 leg pieces on 4 corners. Finally make the back and glue it to complete the bench.

I made a tiny fence so so didn't need to cut many sticks. For the fence cut 4-6 small sticks, keeping 2 cm extra with the required height. Place the sticks on a flat surface vertically by keeping even gap between them. Glue another stick on them horizontally and allow the glue to dry.

You can make so many tiny things with these sticks. You may also try making a swing, stool, table, cabin, mail box, birds house and much more.

Step 5: Collecting Plants

Collecting the plants for this garden is really easy. Collect or buy small cactus and succulent plants. These plants require very low water and nurture. If you plants small cactus and succulent plants it'll take years for them to grow.

Besides you can also use wall moss, ferns and other plants, they also require less water and nurture.

Step 6: Checking All the Items

Prepared the pot (cup), made the mini stuffs, collected the plants and also gathered a few more stuffs for decoration. I'm going to place small mosaic stones, clay mushrooms, super tiny snail shells for the decoration.

Once you've collected and prepared everything for the cup garden decide how you want to decorate and place things.

Step 7: Planting

Planting these plants are super easy because they don't have huge roots so you don't have to worry messing the top soil.

Use a small stick or your finger to make a hole on the soil, place 2 cm of the plant in the hole from the bottom, fill the rest of the hole with soil. Plant the other cactus and succulents similarly. Try keeping small gaps between each plant and also keep at least a cm of gap between the plants and the cup's edge.

Step 8: Decorating

Lucky me, I found a piece of small flat concrete, just the perfect size and shape. I placed it beside the plants so that I can put the bench on it. You'll need to glue the bench on that concrete piece.

Try too collect vine type small wall ferns, I have loads of them on the walls of my garden. Take a long piece of the wall plant. Push its root in the soil near the cups edge, in front. Now glue the cup on the saucer and then glue the ladder with the cup and the saucer, so that we can climb to the garden from the saucer! Wrap the wall plant around the ladder carefully.

Placed some wall moss beside the concrete piece and filled the rest of the soil top with small flat mosaic stones. Also placed the small snail shells near the plants.

Step 9: Final Touch!

The saucer seemed empty and boring so I placed some mosaic stones around it and glued 2 small clay mushrooms near the ladder.

Thanks for checking out my ible and please do try to make one if you're inspired! Share a picture if you make one :)

Ahh, I'm happy with how this turned out!


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    35 Discussions


    Question 11 months ago on Step 9

    Hi Muhaiminah
    Greeting from Copenhagen, Denmark. I work as a writer at a garden magazine and I'm searching for inspiration at the moment. Is it ok if we use this post with the pictures if we credit you by name and URL?
    Kindest regards

    Little Miss Cutie

    2 years ago

    Nice. It's cute. It reminds me of a picnic with tea cups in the garden.

    This is truly magical.


    2 years ago

    Do you have any recommendations on where the best place to get mini plants are? I wanted to make this as a b-day gift, but I can't find the plants anywhere.


    2 years ago

    One little bit of info might be useful to you - cacti & succculents like hot, dry bright conditions, but some mosses like shade & cool & damp, and will die in bright sunlight. (I speak from experience of moss gardening !)

    The fern (?) with tiny leaves used as a tree behind the bench works
    brilliantly - but I have never seen one like it. Do you happen to know
    what type it is ? Thanks.

    2 replies
    Muhaiminah FaizElectroFrank

    Reply 2 years ago

    Thanks for the suggestion, I have never had moss or fern in my mini gardens so that was experimental. You're right, the moss wasn't a good idea for this garden. The plant with small leaves grow all around my garden and concrete walls, so I thought it might a kind of moss.


    Reply 2 years ago

    That's not a fern. It looks like thyme, which is a fine leaved herb that likes hot dry conditions.


    2 years ago

    Love this! Really clever and looks amazing. Only recently discovered these succulents and air plants so it's great to come across this when I'm trying to think of ways to display them.

    1 reply
    Muhaiminah FaizS189

    Reply 2 years ago

    Thanks! Glad to know my ible was helpful, hope you have fun making one :)


    2 years ago

    I love this!! Great way to make a tiny planter into something magical :)

    1 reply

    2 years ago

    ha-ha! LOVE the TINY LADDER!! x^D


    2 years ago

    cool project