Everybody loves these homemade hypertufa pots, even after they've seen the sudden pot death that can result if they're made too thin (or maybe if the winter's too severe - who knows?) Here the bowl-shaped pot second from the left, my favorite of the bunch, suddenly split open last month. Whatever. For something that costs about 2 bucks and looks great, I'll deal with an uncertain lifespan. As for the other, thicker ones, they're holding on after 4 years.
And before somebody writes to ask what the hell hypertufa is, it's a mix of Portland cement, perlite and peatmoss, a formula that produces a reasonable facsimile of the stone troughs traditionally used in rural England for feeding animals - hence they're often called hypertufa troughs. The real things are scarce, heavy and expensive, thus the appeal of homemade substitutes. The mixture is pounded inside the walls of a container, like the bucket, cooler and kitty littler container used for most of these, or on the outside of an overturned container, such as the wok top that formed the broken one here. (Click to enlarge.) I've given workshops in making hypertufa and I gotta say it's one unholy mess. Somehow, like making mudpies, it's also a helluva lot of fun.
For plants, I've used only succulents like sedums and hens and chicks. These drainage-demanding plants love the natural porousness of hypertufa and I love the very low watering needs of the succulents, so everybody's happy as can be.
If there are any hypertufa-makers out there, tell us what plants have worked, how long the pots have survived, and hey, just anything on your mind that's remotely on point.