Build a garden trough using molds:
Step-by-step instructions to building a garden trough using forms.
Hypertufa project #2

Hypertufa Alpine bowl

Hypertufa Project - build a garden trough

Build a garden trough using hand molding method
The following is the method used to hand build a garden trough using an inverted mold. The mold used can be most any plastic container, pot, or wood form.

STEP #1:
First decide on the type and shape you want the inside of your container to look like, as you will be building over this form.

STEP #2:
Wrap your form (mold) in a light plastic bag (plastic grocery bags work well) and place in upside down on a large piece of plastic, this will protect your work area and prevent the Hypertufa from sticking to the work area.

STEP #3:
Mix the three combinations of peat moss, perlite and portland cement. Mix all three dry in a large container before adding the water to the mixture. Now add enough water to the mixture that when you squeeze a hand full of the mixture in your hand it will stay together in a ball.

  • 3 parts peat moss
  • 3 parts perlite
  • 2 parts portland cement

STEP #4 :
Begin placing the hypertufa along the base of your mold and build over the top, making sure that you have at least 2 inches of hypertufa on the top of your mold, as this will be the bottom of your container when you turn the mold over. Add a second coat of hypertufa to your container, since you want to have it about 2 inches in thickness all the away around your project. Make the top of your mold as flat and as large as possible, remember - this is the bottom of your container.

STEP #5 :
Let your mold dry in a well-ventilated room for at least 24 hours. It is a good idea to place an electric fan (air only, not heat) on your project to assist in the drying.

STEP #6 :
After your mold has dried for about 24 hours, gently slide the container over the side of your work area, placing your hand up and inside the inverted mold and gently turn the container over and place it on the work area. Now remove the inner form from your container, being careful not to put any hand pressure on the edges of your container, as it is still very fresh and fragile. Let your container dry for about two weeks or until it has turned a light gray in colour.

STEP #7 :
Once the hypertufa has thoroughly dried, take a file or rasp and grind away the edges and side or your container so you have granite like effect to the outside of your planter. To make it smoother you can now sand the outside of the container.

Hypertufa project:
Hypertufa project: using forms

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