I’m one of those people – you know, the ones who can’t pass up a handmade ceramic mug at the craft fair or a quirky tea cup at the thrift shop. Mugs and tea cups come in so many fun shapes, colors, and sizes; they’re easy to store; and they’re practical for everyday use.
I can’t resist a 1960s floral motif or an artfully imperfect spiral design because I am attracted by the culture and history evident in everyday objects. I love speculating about the previous lives of secondhand goods and nostalgically remembering the time I went to that holiday market in the mountains. They’re souvenirs rife with meaning and memory.
The downside of this is that I have more cups and mugs than I actually need. The solution? Put plants in them! Upcycling your own succulent teacup garden is a cute way to get some more greenery indoors, especially if you’re tight on space.
What You’ll Need:
- Small succulents and/or flowers of your choice (you can visit your local nursery or even order them online)
- Tea cups and mugs in attractive patterns and shapes (pay attention to how wide the mouth is, as some plants will not easily fit into narrow cups)
- Small amount of potting soil or dirt from the yard
- Gather your materials onto an outdoor or countertop workspace.
- Carefully take plants out of store-bought planters and place them into a cup or mug, shaving off excess dirt or adding potting soil as needed to fill in gaps. If the mug is too deep, add potting soil to the base, then place the flower still in its plastic planter directly on top (I did this with the yellow flowers).
- Pat down dirt and give each plant a gentle watering.
- Keep plants out of AC drafts, but near sunlight.
Optional: If you’re adventurous, you can drill drainage holes into your cups. Since I want to be able to use mine for beverages again someday, I skipped this step. Read more about caring for succulents indoors to keep your plants lively.
This would be a fun project to work on with kids and would also be appropriate for weddings, showers, and other celebrations. Mugs and cups are easy to find in sets at antique stores and thrift shops. Happy upcycling!