How to Paint Plant Pots


Terra-cotta flower pots, with their rich, earthy color, are the most common pots used for household plants. However, with the simple use of paints and designs, you can add depth, texture, color and beautiful imagery to enrich the look not only of the flower or plant it holds but the household in general. Designing and painting a pot is a fun, inexpensive hobby. Follow these steps for how to paint a plant pot.

Step 1

Wash off the pot. Make sure to clean off any dirt or price tags by scrubbing the pot in warm water. Let the pot dry completely before applying paint.

Step 2

Choose a color to apply as a base coat. Squeeze your paint colors onto a plastic plate. If painting a sky backdrop, use blue as a base color and add darker hues such as purple or navy to give the color of the sky some depth. If your paint is too thick, then thin out with a bit of water. Use the foam brush to apply a coat of paint around the exterior of the pot. Paint about 1 inch down into the interior of the pot. Do not paint the bottom portion of the pot to allow for drainage. Apply two to three coats and wait for the paint to set.

Step 3

Paint a design on your plant pot. This can either be hand painted with an artist's brush or can be painted on using stencils. Patio paint and stencils can be found at any arts and crafts store. Patio paint is a weather-resistant, acrylic-based paint that adheres well to terra-cotta pots, as it is able to adapt to changes in temperature without damage. Apply a second coat of paint, if needed. Let the the paint dry completely, which may take several days.

Step 4

Spray two or three coats of the acrylic sealant on your pot. This will seal in your color. Wait for each coat to dry before applying another layer. The acrylic sealant comes in matte and glossy finishes. The sealant combined with the patio paint will make the pot weather resistant and will make it easy to clean any excess dirt off of the pot.

Things You'll Need

  • Terra-cotta pot
  • Patio paint
  • Foam brush
  • Artist brush
  • Plastic plate
  • Acrylic sealant


  • Fine Gardening
Keywords: painting flower pots, painting terra-cotta pots, how to paint pots

About this Author

Nikki Cash graduated from UCLA with a bachelor's in film/TV, where she won an MPAA Scholarship. Since graduating, she has written and produced an independent feature film starting her career as a writer in 2005. Cash enjoys writing eHow articles with topics ranging from home improvement to crafts.

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