I’m sure most of us have seen (or drooled over) the rattan and basket pot plant covers that have been making a comeback! One part I’m drawn to is that a lot of them aren’t fully enclosed, but more like a decorative planter that you can switch around, and pull plants in and out of.
I wanted to have a go at making my own wooden pot plant covers, and of course DIYs that don’t need power tools are right up my alley (mostly because I don’t have any)! Enter balsa wood. This wood is often use for crafts and models as it is lightweight and can bend easily. I’ve wanted to try weaving it for a while and I’m glad to say it works, and looks fab! Read on for two types of pot plant covers: a woven balsa wood cover, and a round balsa and dowel cover.
Woven balsa wood Pot Plant Cover
You will need:
10mm thick balsa & 1mm thick balsa
small nails & hammer
Craft / Xacto knife
PVA Glue and hot glue gun
To start, measure the diameter of the pot you’d like to cover. Mine was 14cm. Cut the 10mm balsa wood into eight pieces that are an inch thick and just over 14cm long (a little extra room makes it easier to cover the pot plant).
Use these eight pieces to make two squares that will be the top and bottom of the cover. Glue and nail each edge together for a stronger hold, wait til dry.
With the 1mm thick balsa, cut pieces that are 1 inch wide x the height you’d like your planter to be. Mine was 15cm high. You’ll need around 16 pieces for this size planter, or adjust to an amount that looks good for different sized planters.
Lay out four pieces onto a side of the two squares to get an idea of where they’ll sit. Keep in mind you’ll want space between each piece to allow room to weave later. Use hot glue to glue each piece on, working one side at a time. Hot glue dries faster and allows you to work quicker on this part.
Once each side has the vertical pieces of balsa attached, stand it up the right way. Measure from the outer edge of the balsa on the left to the outer edge on the right to get a measurement of what the horizontal lengths will need to be. Mine were 12cm.
Cut these smaller pieces and begin to weave them through the vertical pieces. They should hold without any glue, but if the edges are sticking out, apply hot glue and clip until the glue dries.
Balsa & Dowel Planter Cover
You will need:
1mm thick balsa wood
half-round dowel, 6mm thickness
PVA Glue & hot glue gun
Measure and cut the balsa wood into one inch strips. Take a strip and carefully bend it around your pot plant for an idea of sizing. Create a loop by cutting off any excess balsa and overlapping 1-2 inches (a bit more is better to give a stronger hold). Use PVA glue to stick the two ends together in a loop, then immediately attach a few fold-back clips to hold it in place until it dries. Make two of these loops, for the top and bottom of the planter cover.
Measure the height you’d like your planter cover to be and cut the dowel down to this size. I used around 12 pieces, but it depends how close together you’d like the dowel and how big your planter is.
Once the balsa loops are dry, hot glue a few dowel ends to the outside of one of the loops. Dab some glue on the other ends and attach the second loop. Once the two loops are attached, you can begin to dab glue on both ends of a dowel and stick them round the balsa, one by one. Space them out however you like.
Which planter cover do you prefer? I’m still undecided! The dowel cover was my original concept but I do love the woven look too. Keep in mind with the round cover that balsa can only bend so far – if you try to make a really small loop, it may snap!
I’d love to try combining the two covers and make one big round, woven cover! It would have to be bigger to allow the balsa to bend in a loop without snapping. Or if you end up making one like this, I’d love to see!