Monday, July 2, 2012

DIY Painted Bucket Planter

When you are given two tomato plants and have nowhere to plant them you can decide to turn up the creative vibes in the garden and create a colorful planter out of buckets, paint and tape! Follow along for an inexpensive project to give a pop of color to your garden.
Bucket or two

Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch spray paint

Sand Paper (emery paper works best on plastic)
Painter’s Tape

Soil for container planting


For the buckets you can visit your neighborhood bagel or donut shop and ask if they have any spare ones. There's a chance they throw them away so they don’t mind giving them to their favorite customers for free. Lightly sand the entire exterior of the buckets to remove that glossy look and help bond the paint. If you are using Rust-Oleum Painter’s Touch that bonds to plastic there is no need to primer your buckets. If you are using a paint that does not bond to plastic try Rust-Oleum spray primer before painting. Be sure to let the primer dry completely before continuing. Note: We primed our buckets before we bought our paint so we ended up with primed buckets and paint that bonded to plastic. Oops! Try not to make this mistake or you’ll end up with peeling paint when you remove the painter’s tape.

Decide on the look you want – vertical stripes, horizontal stripes, two colors or three? We went with vertical stripes and chose summer squash, granite and lagoon as our color palette. Using a flexible measuring tool like a seamstress measuring tape, mark where you want your stripes and what color they will be. If you choose vertical stripes make the marks on the bottom of the bucket so they won’t get lost while painting.


After choosing your first color you can paint the entire bucket or only where you marked out for that color, whichever is easier depending on your design. Don’t forget to paint on a work surface like cardboard so you don’t make too big of a mess. Make sure you let the first color dry at least overnight. Check that the paint is no longer tacky and then position the painter’s tape over the areas of the bucket that you marked off for that color. This will give you your first set of stripes. Follow these directions with the next colors and you will end up with a bucket lined with painter’s tape and great colors underneath.

When you’ve painted all of your stripes and let them dry, carefully peel back the painter’s tape to reveal your colorful bucket planter! If any of the paint peeled away with the tape don’t worry – spray some paint on cardboard and use a paintbrush to apply it to the bucket. Two coats should do a great job at covering up any imperfections. If you are a daily waterer drill a few drainage holes in the bottom of the bucket. Now you are ready to plant away!

Don't want to water everyday? Come back tomorrow for step by step instructions on the irrigation system we added to our bucket planters.

Like this post? You'll love the Scrap Wood Planter project over at J's Workbench.
Linked here: C.R.A.F.T., Craft-O-Maniac, Sumo's Sweet Stuff, Keeping It Simple, Today's Creative Blog, My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia, Sidewalk Shoes Garden Tuesday, Someday Crafts, The CSI Project, Fireflys and Jellybeans, Beyond the Picket Fence, Power of Paint, The Glamorous Housewife and Garden.Cook.Write.Repeat


  1. Super cute! I love it!

  2. Thank you for linking up!!! Those are so cute!

  3. Love planters and your sweet dog. So cute. I hope you will link these up to The CSI Project. The challenge is Summer outdoor decorating and parties. Come on over! You just might win!!!!

    1. Thanks! I'll head over to check out the contest.

  4. So cute! Makes me wish I had somewhere with sunlight to actually grow things.

    1. Try some succulents on a window sill! You can always paint smaller containers to add that pop of color. :)

  5. What a great way to spruce up a boring plastic bucket! Nice job.

    Thanks doll,
    The Glamorous Housewife


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