How to make a concrete plant pot from a tin can

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Concrete plant pot

A quick & easy project for you comes in the form of this super fun concrete plant pot.  Why stop at one though?  You could make a collection of identical or different sized pots that will look great on a mantle piece, windowsill or desk.  Go on, give it a go!


  • Concrete (you can use rapid drying cement if you’re in a hurry, but bear in mind it won’t be as strong as standard cement)
  • Coarse / concrete sand
  • Empty Tin Can
  • Plywood, 18mm (small scrap piece)
  • Water
  • Packing tape
  • Cactus
  • Petroleum jelly




1. From a scrap piece of plywood, use your hole saw to cut three circles using the 2 inch hole saw. Sand any rough edges.

2. Tape together your plywood circles to form a stack.  These will create the space to put your plant or tea light.  Then apply a thin layer of petroleum jelly to cover the entire stack to make it easier to remove from the concrete later.

3. Prepare your can by emptying the contents out and removing the outer label.  Use your angle grinder to make a single vertical cut down the can, which will make it easier to release the concrete piece later.  Tape the can back together.

4. Combine 4 parts coarse sand to 1 part cement in a bucket using your trowel, and stir in enough water to bind the mixture (add a small amount, stir, and repeat until it looks right).

Tip: As your finished piece won’t need to be as strong as a building structure, you can use more cement, which will result in a smoother finish.

5. Once mixed, use your trowel to transfer a small amount of the cement into the base of the empty can.

6. Place your circular plywood stack into the centre of the can so it extends a little above the lip of the can.  Then carefully fill the rest of the can with cement, pressing firmly to ensure there aren’t any air bubbles.  Fill to just above the lip of the mould, then use a scrap piece of wood to smooth the top, making sure not to cover the top of the stack

7. Leave to set for a few days, or follow the instructions on your concrete pack

8. To release the concrete from the can mould, remove the tape from the can.  Then whilst wearing gloves, prise apart the can at the cut you made earlier.

9. Once the can has been removed, carefully pull the circular plywood stack from the concrete.  If you have difficulty removing the plywood, drill holes into it and carefully prise out using a flat-headed screwdriver.  

10. Place your plant inside and enjoy your handiwork! 

Important safety info: Always use appropriate safety equipment for the tools & processes you’re using.  Remember to never leave lit candles unattended.