Some of the most beautiful things I have ever seen have been pulled from the garbage. Yep, you heard me right. Ha! The proper word is “upcycling”…..or turning trash into treasure. That is exactly what is happening here. We are going to turn an old broken, tarnished, silver teapot into a beautiful indoor planter for your favorite succulents.
During my most recent visit to Tennessee, my grandmomma pulled out a “lovely” brown teapot and said, “Here. I saved this for you. Doodad found it at the dump.” I know what you’re thinking. First you’re thinking “What is a Doodad?” and next you’re thinking “Who gives someone something and says they pulled it from a dumpster?” Haha.
Well, Doodad is my grandfather. So that’s settled. And Doodad took a part time job working at the dump. (The men in my family have a hard time sitting still. lol)
Every now and then Doo comes home with a real keeper. He has brought back furniture, unopened bottles of wine (ha! Don’t ask.), appliances, a welder…it goes on and on. But this time he brought home a little ole teapot . A little ole broken, brown teapot . I seriously love it.
Grandmomma said, “It’s broken….missing the top….but I thought you might like it. Maybe you can put flowers in it or something.”
That was my initial thought. Just clean up the tarnished silver until it shines and then use it as the occasional vase. Then I thought….no, maybe artificial flowers. I didn’t want it have to put it away! But although I have seen some SERIOUSLY beautiful arrangements, it’s not currently “my thing”.
I mulled it over for a couple more days and suddenly it hit me! I thought of the little plants my stepmom has sitting all over her house. Usually it’s just a small pot on a counter in various rooms. SO cute. Succulents it is.
How did we suddenly decide on succulents? The more you stick around my blog, the more you realize my mind has a very complex way of coming to any conclusion.
So here is what I did.
Make That Silver Shine!
The very first thing I knew I had to do was get it clean. I have never cleaned silver that is so badly tarnished but Garrett knew what to do! (Ahem….*hero status*)
So out into the world I went…to buy some TarnX.
The bottle recommends that you wear gloves and use a clean cotton cloth to remove the tarnish.
I wasn’t really sure what to expect. When I opened the bottle I thought it was going to smell like raw sewage…or fiery chemical flatulence. Nope. Didn’t smell like anything at all. I even got brave and stuck my nose in the bottle. (Insert: Don’t do this at home, folks) Nada.
So I put on my gloves, poured a little onto my clean, white rag…and touched it to the tarnished silver. Instant. Chemical. Flatulence. UGH! But it came right off!
It stinks a little. Nobody likes a stinky chemical reaction….but it had to be done. Just grit your teeth and bear it. Or wipe faster.
Make sure you follow the directions on the bottle and rinse the silver when you have wiped it all clean. It should shine like a pretty, new penny….uh, quarter before 1965.
Next, Planting Succulents!
Here is the list of materials for part two:
- River Rocks or Pebbles (for drainage)
- Loose, well draining soil
- Small succulents (your choice)
- Spanish moss (optional)
- Silver teapot from the Dump (or other beautiful, useful trash of your choosing)
Garrett and I were a little concerned about having a drainage hole in the bottom of the teapot . But never fear! I did a little research and as long as you do not over water and rot the roots you will be fine.
First, place your rocks into the bottom of your teapot (or whatever container you chose). This will serve as an escape for extra water. As I mentioned before, we do not want to rot our roots.
Next, fill your container with a loose, good draining soil until you have about an inch to two inches space left at the top.
Now carefully pull out small sections of your succulent plants. I used panda plant, elephant bush and ghost flower. Plant them in the top and cover the extra space with a little more soil.
Add your final touches by filling in gaps with spanish moss. It doesn’t do anything for your plants. I just like the extra level of whimsy.
And your done! Everything I read said to never water past a half inch below the surface IF YOU DON’T HAVE DRAINAGE HOLES in your containers! Then you would wait until the soil dries completely and repeat the process. I plan on using a spray bottle to water mine.
Now, go place it somewhere pretty and stare at it. What a masterpiece!