Can You Paint Plastic Plant Pots? Learn How

Plastic planters and pots are the go-to materials you see in every garden patio and balcony. They come in all shapes, sizes and colours and you can get them at a very low price. What’s even better with them? Adding your personal touch and making them something of your own. You know that you can paint plastic and your cement planters, right? How cool is that?

Colourful plastic flower pots

Hence, instead of throwing away your old pots, you can upcycle them by changing their colour. It’s an easy DIY project. As soon as you have the right guidelines, you have nothing to be afraid of. And we’re here to help you. We will walk you through the process to master this painting project.

What kind of pots can you paint?

Visiting a garden centre or a home improvement store, you’ll be amazed by the several choices of garden planters and pots. Colourful, decorated, plain, big, small pots. However, not all pots are proper to use. Whether you want to make a herb garden, flowers or a vegetable garden,  you need to measure and find the ideal plant pot to be sure it has good drainage, or if you want to hang your plants from the ceiling to get the right style and shape. 

It’s almost the same when it comes to painting pots. Not all types can be painted. Terracotta pots or clay pots are these monotonous containers with colours from red tones to pale orange to darker brown. Well, thankfully, you can brighten them up by painting them with acrylic-latex paints. Another pot type someone can paint is ceramic pots. For this type, latex, acrylic and epoxy paints are best to be used.

Plastic plant pots are the most common pot type and probably it’s the most versatile of all. You can paint it and make it look like clay, ceramic or weathered stone. Even black plastic pots can be painted. Just a splash of white paint can turn your black boring pot into an amazing container to grow strawberries.

Which paint to use

The choices are many when it comes to the kind of paint you can use for such a DIY project. You can use:

Four brushes and three colours

  • Acrylic paints: They come in every colour and shade. It’ll be impossible not to find the perfect colour. It’s a cheap way to improve your potted garden.
  • Chalk: It’s the easiest way to paint almost anything, including plastic, and it doesn’t require any preparation, like sanding and priming. You should definitely use this paint if you want a rustic, vintage, and shabby chic effect. Let alone the colour variety. You’ll find all the colour palettes.
  • Spray paint: Painting with spray is a quick way and offers an even coverage without brush strokes. You can use it to paint metal, wicker, resin, and plastic. Plus, it protects surfaces from rain and bad weather.
  • Permanent markers: Permanent markers are great for every DIY home craft project to draw over paint, wood, plastic and terracotta surfaces. You can paint your pots with a neutral colour and then give them to your children to draw with these markers.

How to paint plastic plant pots with acrylic paint

Acrylic is a paint that can stick to almost any surface, such as wood, fabric, glass and plastic. You can paint both indoor and outdoor flower pots with this paint and give them a brand new look.

Here’s a step-by-step tutorial on how to paint your plastic flower pots and planters with this type of paint.

Needed materials and tools: 

  • Plastic flower pots
  • Acrylic paints
  • Paintbrushes
  • A wet cloth
  • Fine-grit sandpaper
  • Dish soap
  • Water
  • Steel wool
  • Newspaper

Acrylic pastel colours in cans

Steps to follow:

  1. Before painting pots, you need to clean them. Wash them with soapy water, and rub them with steel wool to remove all dirt. Let them dry for a few minutes.
  2. Next, sand the pots lightly. Once you’re done, get a wet cloth and wipe them to remove the dust and allow them to dry again.
  3. While waiting for pots to dry, prepare your working surface. Lay a few newspapers to protect the surface, the floor and the surrounding items from paint drips.
  4. Once they’re dry, put them on top of the newspaper. Get your brush and the paint, and start with the base coat.
  5. Finally, wait for the first coat to dry. It will take about 6 hours. Once it has dried, paint the second coat.

Extra tip: You can also prime your surface before painting. Priming helps panting stay.

How to spray paint plastic plant pots 

Spray painting plastic planters and pots is an easy way to upcycle your old pots and give them an amazing new look.

Needed materials and tools:

  • Plant pots
  • Spray paint (that is made to be used with plastic or resin)
  • Paint sprayers
  • Dish soap
  • Water
  • A sponge
  • Fine-grit sandpaper
  • A damp cloth
  • Drop cloths

Steps to follow:

  1. Clean your plastic flower pots with soapy water. Dip a sponge into the solution and wipe the outside of the pot.
  2. Rinse the pots off the soap and wipe dry with a cloth.
  3. Next, lightly sand the outer parts. Once you finish sanding, wipe again with a damp cloth to remove all the dust.
  4. Lay a drop cloth or plastic sheeting on the work surface to protect it and place it on top of the pot. For your convenience, you can place the pot on top of a cinder block to be able to paint the entire surface at once.
  5. After that, get your paint sprayer and a can of spray paint. Spray the pot lightly from a 20-25 cm distance. Spray a light coat, or else there’s a chance of paint dripping around and making a mess.
  6. Let the paint dry for about 30 minutes. Then you can recoat. You can spray-paint the pots as many times as necessary until you get the perfect coverage. Just between coats, make sure you allow pots to dry.
  7. Before spraying the last coat, you need to paint the bottom of the pot. Just turn the bottom upside down and spray it as well.
  8. Finally, let the newly painted pots dry overnight. Then, they’ll be ready for you to plant your flowers!

Extra tip: If you can’t find the colour you like, spray the pots with a primer that can adhere to plastic first, and then paint over the prime. The colour will adhere very well.

How to chalk paint plastic plant pots

This type of paint is a low-cost and quick way you might need to consider when it comes to makeover your home decor in general. This technique doesn’t require sanding or priming. You just grab your brushes and paint. You can chalk paint furniture, including pine furniture, your sofa, and even your marble fireplace. You can also use it to paint plastic planters and pots.

paint brush, a roller, waxes and chalk paints

Needed materials and tools:

  • Chalk paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Newspapers

Steps to follow:

  1. Again, the first thing you need to do is wash your pots with soapy water and let them dry.
  2. While waiting for the pots to dry, lay a few newspapers on the surface you will work on and place your pots on top.
  3. Next, stir your paint and dip your brush into it. Cover the entire surface, including the bottom.
  4. Let the first coat dry for 1-3 hours. Then, you can apply the second coat.
  5. Finally, let the next coat dry as well. Once the whole process is done, you can plant your flowers.

Painting some small old plastic pots

Now that you know how to paint your plastic pots, you don’t need to spend money and get new ones unless they’re broken. Choose your favourite colours, roll up your sleeves and go into action. You’ll be amazed by the result! So! What are you waiting for? Start painting!

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