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This step-by-step guide will show you how to create a quick, easy hostess gift to bring to your next gathering using a mason jar and succulent plants.

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make a planter from a mason jar

Growing up in bright and sunny Los Angeles, I learned very early on that Southern California is the epitome of entertaining. Longer days and warm breezy nights create the perfect elixir for friendly celebrations toting no formal occasion other than the official change in season. Beach days turned to cozy bonfires; evening dinners on beautifully-lit patios; pool parties; and my personal favorite, brunch—happen year-round in Southern California.

With so many festivities happening, I try to bring a hostess gift as often as possible. This usually entails a bottle of Rosé or a beautiful bouquet of seasonal blooms—my personal favorite being peonies.

I like to think of those two options as my easy routes. But I really love the thoughtfulness behind crafting a unique gift for the host or hostess.

Simple and chic—mason jar terrariums make great gifts. Mason jars are a perfect planter for fun and quirky succulents. These drought-tolerant beauties come in so many varietals, gem-colors and sizes. Succulents are incredibly low maintenance and easy for practically anyone to care for (with a few exclusions).

*Not sure where to start? There are a lot of great guides for tips on watering and caring for succulents.

Variety of Succulent Plants

I recently visited my local hardware in search of a few succulents. I can spend hours gawking at all the different succulents. After an embarrassingly long length of time and a cart-full later, I finally decided on a few to take home and include in my mason jar terrarium.

Aren’t these pretty?

Don’t worry. I didn’t bring ALL of these home.

I keep my kitchen well-stocked with mason jars of all shapes and sizes, which makes this craft very easy and convenient for me to make. With a few extra supplies, I can put a mini succulent terrarium together in less than 30 minutes.

What to need to make a succulent planter using a mason jar.

To make your own, here is what you will need:
Pictured (clockwise): Mason jars, rocks, cactus mix/soil, succulents, moss.

  • Mason Jar (I used a half pint mason jar and a pint and a half mason jar for this particular project but you can use any size you choose)
  • Soil (Cactus Mix – This can be found at any hardware store or garden center)
  • Succulents (any shape, size, color of your choosing. I recommend picking out a few different sizes. You will want to select one varietal that will stand out and be the focal point. Then pick a few smaller succulents in different shades to create texture and build around the focal point.) This is a great project if you have any succulent trimmings!
  • Moss
  • Rocks or small pebbles
  • Baker’s twine, gift tags, etc. (Optional)

Step 1:

How to Fill Succulent Planter

Once you’ve selected your mason jar, place a few rocks and/or pebbles at the bottom of the jar. Placing the rocks or pebbles at the bottom of the jar followed by cactus mix soil will create optimal drainage. Leave the soil at the top packed less dense, as you will be adding succulents and re-positioning some of the soil.

Step 2:

How to add succulent plants to a mason jar

Gently place one of your larger succulent stems or trimmings in the middle of the mouth of the jar. Lightly pack it into the soil to hold it in place.

Step 3:

How to add succulent plants to a mason jar

Next, take the stems or trimmings of the other smaller succulents and carefully position them around the larger succulent being used as the focal point.

Step 4:

How to add succulent plants to a mason jar

Repeat until the surface of the mason jar is nearly full.

Step 5:

How to add succulent plants to a mason jar

Continue building around the larger succulent until the mouth of the jar is full but not overstuffed. Once you’ve reached this point, use moss to fill in any space not taken up by succulents.

Completed Project

How to Make Mason Jar Succulent Planters

Et voilà!

I wrapped some burlap and ribbon around the pint and a half mason jar. You can spruce up the jar however you’d like by adding any type of ribbons, baker’s twine or even some paint.

Short on time? Trader Joe’s is my one stop shop for all things party-related. They carry a wonderful selection of affordable flowers and plants, in addition to a great wine section.

Large mason jars make great vases for bouquets. Simply pick out one of your favorite bouquets, or assemble one from single varietal flowers and place it in a mason jar. It’s quick, easy and effortless.

With these ideas for quick gifts handy, I’m looking forward to the next soiree.

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About the Author

Gabe Vogt

Gabe is a Los Angeles native with a penchant for all things food related. When she's not snacking, you can find her at the barre.

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