How to Build and Plant a Succulent Garden

Succulent Gardens require very little water and almost no maintenance. And they can be gorgeous!
Succulent Gardens are easy to create and super easy to care for.
We used PVC pipe and cut it at an angle
Spray painted with stone paint
Fill with pea gravel for drainage and soil. Then planted the succulents.
Some of the plants were also planted in the ground.
Since there were some questions about Indoor Succulent Gardens, I thought I would add a photo of the one we created for indoors. They do great indoors.

Hoosier Homemade
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

  11 questions
  • Bonnie Bonnie on Feb 17, 2016
    The shape of the pic looks oval. Is that from the cut you made on top
    • SusieB SusieB on Feb 18, 2016
      Bonnie, I also thought the pipes looked oval but it is the angled cut on the pipe that gives the illusion.
  • Jsm5179467 Jsm5179467 on Apr 11, 2016
    Is there any reason you couldn't plant other annuals in them? Wonderful idea!
    • Lorraine Aha Lorraine Aha on Apr 14, 2016
      No. Just use a short layer of gravel and fill the rest of the pipe with potting soil.
  • Juanita Juanita on Apr 20, 2016
    I tried this but the paint wouldn't stick. What did you do so the paint would stick to the PVC?
    • She She on May 07, 2016
      sand a bit harder, use Vinegar -straight- to wipe clean. Let air dry in sun, if possible 2-8 hrs. Then try to paint-check paint label for use, or ask paint dept. person. Talked to -home plumbing- they said PVC has coating- use expensive 'BIN' SEALANT, but I think cheap waterproof glue to seal, or cover glue With sand - paint after 24 hr Dry would work. Hope these help.
    • Sandra Sandra on May 16, 2016
      Wipe down with acetone nail polish remover, then clean with plain water and dry before painting. I painted the trim on my PVC window trim using the polish remover as a sanding medium...
    • Karen Force Karen Force on May 16, 2016
      Just use sandpaper.
    • Possumlady Possumlady on May 30, 2016
      What a great inexpensive idea. I have a tortoise that eats everything in her reach. This could keep her out.
  • Juanita Juanita on Apr 20, 2016
    The paint wouldn't stick to the PVC when I tried this. How did you prepare the pipe?
  • Beverly Tusler Beverly Tusler on May 16, 2016
    How did you get the paint to stick to PVC?
    • Karen Force Karen Force on May 16, 2016
      Just roughen it up with a light sanding
    • Thomas Martinkovic Thomas Martinkovic on Jun 17, 2016
      Just rough it up with sand paper and most decorative stone texture paint with adhere no problem
    • Jill Brooks Jill Brooks on Dec 13, 2016
      When this type of paint first came out, I went a little crazy. So I learned how to work with it by MANY trials and errors, lol. Roughing the surface does work, but if you're at home w/o sandpaper, you CAN "prime" the surface with a traditional spray paint (made for plastic etc is ideal, but they all work", let dry thoroughly, THEN your Specialty Paints will adhere. I also used a Spray Adhesive on some projects and for an interesting look, USE the fact it won't stick and make a design of your own on the pvc pipe. Spray ONLY the areas you WANT to stick, wiping away where if goes over off easilywith paper towels or a rag. I used Black PVC with a pretty Copper colored sand paint and had a lovely, unique, one-of-a-kind piece of ART in my Garden. Of course...ALWAYS slay with a clear sealant per the instructions on the can! (Usually after its completely dry! OR within a few minutes of the initial spraying)
  • Gavi Gavi on Jun 09, 2016
    That little bamboo mat is precious! Where is it from please?
  • Gcr11114485 Gcr11114485 on Mar 11, 2017
    Did you use only pea gravel in the pipes? This looks really good.
  • Peggy Fergueson Miller Peggy Fergueson Miller on Aug 03, 2017
    I love this and how inexpensive! How do you move it if it has no bottom or is it stationery only? Thanks for posting this great project.

    • Yojimbo Yojimbo on Aug 12, 2017
      I wondered the same thing, and the solution I came up with was to get a pipe cap for each tube and drill a LOT of holes in it, then put a circle of landscape fabric inside the pipe and glue the cap on with pie cement. Now you have a porous bottom on each tube!
    • Peggy Fergueson Miller Peggy Fergueson Miller on Aug 12, 2017
      Perfect, Thank you. I can't wait to get started.
    • Mary Mary on May 20, 2019

      How does the stone paint hold up outside? the rust-oleum site specifies this as indoor use only.

  • Patricia Patricia on Feb 27, 2019

    Do succulent plants need a lot of direct sunlight. I’m primarily in shade

    • Gale Gale on Jan 29, 2020

      No they do not. I have a garden in a plastic dish and it sits on my porch with no direct sun. It is doing great

    • Tami Tami on Jul 11, 2021

      I agree with Gale. I’m here in Albuquerque New Mexico which is High Desert. We’ve planted our succulents in different sunny areas. You always want to check the growers/vendors tags if included with the plant but every succulent we’ve planted has done great

  • Mary Mary on May 20, 2019

    How does the stone paint hold up outside? The Rustoleum site specifies this as indoor use only?

  • Mysteria Mysteria on Nov 28, 2019

    Do succulents need a special soil?

    • Hoosier Homemade Hoosier Homemade on Nov 29, 2019

      Yes it's best to use soil that is specific for succulents. The bag will have it listed on it.

    • Jan Johnson-Miller Jan Johnson-Miller on Jan 26, 2020

      I I’ve in AZ, there is a soil made for cacti that works well

    • Sewtime Sewtime 3 days ago

      If you buy the ones at Dollar Tree you don’t have to worry about watering them, they are plastic. It’s the only plant that I can not kill. 😒


Join the conversation

3 of 63 comments
  • Paula Paula on Jan 26, 2020

    will give it a whirl. Like the idea that the plants are pretty and very easy to take care of. Have hanging baskets in front of my house and a LOT of SUN. They should work great there. Also around 2 trees where the sprinklers don't hit real good.

    • AVmom AVmom on May 17, 2020

      I recently bought succulents. I always thought they were a shade plant, but there’s one that likes full sun and turns yellow in the sun

  • Zhoozh’d by Sandy Zhoozh’d by Sandy on May 13, 2020

    Some of my PVC inspired by you. ✌🏼💜