Almost threw it out...
we call "The Enchanted Forest".
As I dug, I fantasized about keeping a few in a planter for the lower deck. Get that *tropical* look, you know? Yep, here in Iowa, not much is tropical except for the hot, humid weather during the summer.
So, I went into the capped garage and found this old, icky looking planter that was already filled with soil. It would be "good enough" for the time being.
3 ferns were planted. Those same 3 ferns were cut down to soil level after a day. They were drooping like an old lady's boobs. I still had hopes they'd start growing again.
When we returned from our Colorado vacation about 2 weeks later, they did!
They were growing like nobody's business!
BUT, that planter was still ugly.
I decided to do a little DIY project with what I had in the house and
give this planter a make-over.
First, I cleaned it up good with soapy water and a brush. No miracles there.
I wanted to give the pot a plaster-like texture, so I added some leftover dry grout from a tile project to a sample jar of paint. Lowe's sells these reject paints for $1 and I pick them up from time to time for small projects.
I mixed the grout and paint well with a plastic spoon. It became thick quick, so I worked quickly! Using a paint brush and a foam brush, I applied the mixture to the entire outer surface.
Once I had it all covered with the paint/grout mix, it was sure clean looking, but not really what I had hoped it would look like.
I went digging through my paint stash and found nothing that I thought would work.
In the back of the closet, I came up with some old brown shoe polish paste. Who keeps shoe polish anymore? I guess I do. Can't tell you the last time I used it though.
Using an old rag, I dipped into the polish and smudged it along the raised parts of the planter, giving it a rustic look. That's what I was after!
Easy job. Cost me next to nothing and looks a whole lot better! No telling how long that shoe polish will last, but who cares? It sits under the deck (ferns like shade), so it won't get beaten with rain and if it does wash out, I got more in the back of the closet. :)