Saturday, May 5, 2012

Hypertufa hell

I am trying my hand at hypertufa so I have something else to sell at this Garden Art Sale coming up on June 24 at the Parkside Lodge in Delaware Park (during the Parkside Garden Tour).

It's the first time I've ever done this, but it's been on my list for a long time. I followed the directions I found on this blog here. It's quite easy, almost therapeutic. I started last weekend, I'll make more this weekend and then the following weekend - they take roughly three weeks to cure, and I have to leach the lime, add holes by drilling and "scruff up" the exteriors, so I want them all done three weeks before the Sale.
For my molds I used anything I could around the house - garden pots, salad containers, USPS corrugated plastic mail carriers, an extra-large soda bottle, bins from my daughter's old rack of toy bins, and a Styrofoam shape that something electronic came in from a large box.

It's a messy process. I used portland cement, perlite, and peat moss in equal amounts and add water until it's thick enough to pick up by hand and place in a container - about cottage cheese consistency.

Even if I don't sell them all (or any!) I will like keeping them for myself!
Molds of anything I could find around the house.

I bought two colors of concrete stain - so I get three colors
all together of pots - Terra Cotta, Buff and concrete color.
Pre-washed lettuce containers.
Didn't use an "inside" mold for these. I just formed the mix around the edges by hand.
First weekend yield.

4 comments:

  1. I hope you're not using garden grade perlite like the Miracle Grow! That'll quickly eat into profits. In case it's helpful, I buy my perlite (masonry grade, not garden grade) from a masonry supply store. It's a huge bag (50 gallons or so) for $20. I buy my garden grade perlite from a hydroponic store. The bag is similarly large but $30.

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  2. Love your artistic values of containers. Never even thought of some of the things you used to create those beautiful garden ideas. Gives me a definite "itch"
    Thankyou for that info.

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  3. Love all the variety. They look nice. When you have a messy project, it's always nice to do a bunch at once to only have to clean up once too. Hope they're a hit for you.

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  4. Not So Angry,
    I did buy garden-grade (but not Miracle grow branded). Thanks for the tip. I'll look for masonry grade next time.

    Brenda,
    Thanks for the comment. I see from your site you have MUCH experience in this realm.

    Sherlock Street Gardener,
    Thank you. I'm working over the course of weeks, so the mess is left on its own - but hidden in the garage out of sight.

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