Tippy Pot Tutorial!

By request, I finally got the tippy pot post done.  Since I had to move the pots since they got overgrown by the burning bush (way to think ahead, Lori) – I thought I would show how super duper easy these are.

Inexpensive, too.  Both things near and dear to my heart. 😀

You need basically 6 things:

tippy pots

  • A 48 inch inch piece of rebar.  You can find this at a home improvement store in standard lengths (about $2.50).  If you can find a longer one, you can make a bigger tower, but you need to pound it further into the ground. FYI. 
  • Four 8-inch terra cotta pots
  • A small rock for tipping the first pot
  • A hammer
  • Measuring device (tape measure, ruler, etc)
  • Dirt and plants of choice

First, measure 12 inches on the rebar and mark it.  This is how far you need to pound the rebar into the ground unless you want your tippy pots to become tipped over pots.  Use the hammer and pound away!


Now please make sure that you know where you are doing this and aren’t going to hit any buried cable, gas or water lines.

Take your small rock or piece of wood or whatever that will go underneath one side of the pot to keep it tipped over and place it on the ground:


Next, thread the first pot on the pole.  It’s easier to do this empty, but I had to disassemble this and it already had the plants in it.  It still works.  The trick is to tilt the pot so the rebar is passing through at an angle.  You need to make sure your pot drainage holes are big enough to tip (otherwise they just sit straight up).  Most terra cotta pots are all the same.

tippy pots

The pot lip should be resting against the rebar as above.

Next, put the second pot on and tip it the opposite way of the first pot, sliding it down the rebar at an angle.


See where this is going?

tippy pots

Stack the other 2 pots on the same way.

Then put some much around the bottom to hide the base and voila!

tippy pots


I also did one with plastic pots.  I had to use a 1/2 drill to put a hole in the bottom of the plastic ones.  This is a 12 inch pot and three 8 inch pots.

tippy pots


If you use plastic ones, make sure they are thick enough to support weighted pots above them.  These are a little thin and the first pot is squished a bit.  Lesson learned.  I put wave petunias in this one, so I will have to show how it looks later in the season – not to mention I need something for the bottom pot!

If you want to do these on a patio or porch, just use an old coffee can or something to pour cement in and set the rebar in it to make it weighted.  Then place the weighted rebar in a pot flat on the ground (like the above picture) and build up.

Also, anything can be tipped like galvanized buckets, old watering cans, etc.  It’s a very creative medium. You just need to be able to drill a hole in it!

On a final note, I had to share a picture of my big bearded iris that is now blooming!  This is the boysenberry buttercup.

boysenberry buttercup


It’s gorgeous!

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18 thoughts on “Tippy Pot Tutorial!

    1. Lori Post author

      They are stupid easy to do. I takes about 10 minutes to set it up and then 10 more to put the plants in place.

      I think painting the pots different colors would be fun as well.

  1. debby

    That is WAAAYYY cuter than the time involved to make them! It seems like you should patent this idea and make your fortune! It seems like it would be something fun to do with kids. I’m going to pass it along to my BF. Maybe a project for her grandchildren.

    That bearded iris is unbelievably beautiful.
    debby´s last blog post ..New Food

    1. Lori Post author

      They are so cute! I can’t take credit for the idea, though. They actually sell kits to make these that are expensive, but why bother when it is so easy to do.

    1. Lori Post author

      I don’t know, Fran. You are waaaaay more organized than I am. I just like to make a mess 😀

  2. Ali @ Peaches and Football

    That iris IS gorgeous! Beautiful colors. The tippy pots are amazing – I love the different look and that it’s simple and fast to assemble! Plus, it would maximize a small area so you could have different flowers without taking up a lot of garden space.
    Ali @ Peaches and Football´s last blog post ..The Last Venues

  3. Cammy@TippyToeDiet

    Okay, so when I opened the post, I had no intention of making a tippy pot tower, but then I realized I have the rebar and the extra pots, so why not? 🙂 Thanks for the info. I’ve seen them here and there, but didn’t know about the rock trick.
    Cammy@TippyToeDiet´s last blog post ..All-in-One Dinner & Dessert

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