DIY: upcycled cork planters

On a recent trip to Denmark I saw some ridiculously adorable cacti in cork planters. I thought they’d be super easy and fun to make and also avoid me the 20€ price tag! So  every time we’ve had champagne in lab meetings since, I’ve collected the corks. It didn’t take long to have enough corks to get started-  Finns are all to happy to celebrate a successful publication or grant at 10am with sparking wine! Here’s a quick step-by-step guide to make your own tiny plant garden.

The corks planters in Denmark, complete with 149dkk (20€) price tag for 3


Materials & Tools

  • Small succulents & dirt
  • Used corks of different shapes and sizes – I like champagne corks as they’re thicker than wine corks and often have interesting shapes and printing on them
  • Sharp pocket knife/scissors or a small chisel (if you have a chisel I think it would work best)
  • Small spoon or other implement to add dirt & pack down





Hollow out the center- start with a small rectangle then make it bigger. Finally, work around the whole of the top circle of the cork. A depth of around half the height of the cork should be enough. This is by far the longest part of the process.


Add succulent and dirt. Use the spoon to pack down the dirt around the succulent and secure it in place.




Repeat for all corks and you’re done! If you don’t want the corks to be free-standing then glue the bases to a painted old jar lid or similar. You can also attach a magnet to the back of each cork and keep on them on the fridge.




These little ones are off to a friend.