Large Homemade Mosaic Brick Planter

DIY bricks made of mortar with embellishments of your choosing. I used small tiles, jewelry, shells, pebbles, beads, glass stones for the dollar store and other found objects.
Dig a trench. To start the trench I used 2 large nails (one at either end) attached to a 40" string and marked my circle with spray paint to start.
Now it is almost round!
After the trench was dug used regular bricks as my base.
As you can see there is still work to be done to get this circle round and level.
Started with food storage containers from Dollar Tree store. Try to find a container that does not tapper. Equal (as much as possible) in size at bottom and top. Coat container with Petroleum Jelly or cooking spray so the mortar brick will slip out of the mold.
Select your embellishments and design what will go into each mold before mixing mortar.
The containers I used are 5.5" x 6.5" x 4" tall. I filled them 1.5 to 2", depending on how much mortar I had mixed. They don't have to be all the exact same size.
After they are removed from mold, continue to wet them down. This helps to cure the mortar.
This circle has a 20' diameter, my bricks are 6.5" wide, with approximately 3/8" mortar fill, = 6.875" or 6 7/8". 240" divided by 6.875 = 34.909 or 35 bricks x 2 rows = 70 bricks total
After you have all your bricks made you mix mortar up in batches. How much you mix up depends on how much time you have but no more than you can use in 20 minutes. Apply mortar to regular brick base then set your bricks. Sometimes I used pieces of wood to keep the bricks propped up until they set.
Another view of the 1st tree circle planter.
E made of rings from my late Mother-In-Law "Eloise"

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Have a question about this project?

3 of 6 questions
  • Dar Woodhurst
    on Feb 25, 2016

    I am looking to make real stepping stone, you know to walk on. Does the mortar mix work for stepping stones as well, or do you need something else if you are going to walk on them. thanks

    • Jennifer Schmidt-McGarvey
      on May 24, 2017

      Everyone has wonderful ideas. It's beautiful! Even the ones done by the little ones, years from now you an look back and remember them when they were small. But I do have a question, do you have to seal the concrete with anything afterwards? The reason I ask is I bought some cute small one from the dollar store to put in my rock garden and after one year they crumbled into a thousand pieces???
  • Barleysue
    on Jan 24, 2017

    Did you use mortar or concrete? Are they the same thing?

    • Rose Whitcher
      on May 25, 2017

      I wouldn't use mortar, it will crumble. I use sand concrete, stones last for years
  • Nina
    on May 17, 2017

    I love your project and wanted to share mine. My mom passed away in August 2009. A few weeks later I gathered similar supplies and all of her grandchildren. We all made and decorated a brick to create a little memorial garden outside my parents house. They're showing their age but each one is very special.

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