How to Age Clay Flower Pots

Overview

One of the key props to the perfect country garden is a collection of old clay pots. Whether holding herbs or annuals, used as a storage space for hand tools, or simply stacked together as a decoration on an outdoor shelf, clay pots add an authentic aesthetic touch when aged. Clay makes for a porous surface that can last for generations. Because of that porous surface, pots that start a bright terra cotta orange over time will fade from the sun, get white calcium markings from watering and develop a green patina thanks to moss buildup. You can speed up the process by aging your own in no time.

Step 1

Mix one part glaze with one part hunter green paint in a clean container.

Step 2

Paint mixture in a random dabbing pattern around the pot, not up and down. Use an old rag or piece of material. Experiment on different pots with different types of material for slight variations in patterning for different looks. Try concentrating on any grooves or patterns in your pot--real moss would fill up those spaces.

Step 3

Mix one part brown acrylic paint with two parts glaze.

Step 4

Brush brown glaze mixture lightly over the whole pot, again going around the pot instead of up and down.

Step 5

Allow to dry thoroughly before using the pot for planting.

Tips and Warnings

  • Plants grown in terra cotta clay pots will need daily watering regardless of the heat of the day. Misting your pot before watering will help keep the water in the soil versus sucking into the porous clay material.

Things You'll Need

  • Hunter green acrylic paint
  • Brown acrylic paint
  • Glaze
  • Rag
  • Paintbrush

References

  • Antique Your Pots and Add Fall Color
  • Aging and Cleaning Porous Pots

Who Can Help

  • Caring for Terra Cotta Pots
Keywords: patina, moss, country garden

About this Author

Bobbi Keffer attended Kent State University, studying education but soon found her true love to be in the garden. She prides herself on her frugal skills, re-using, recycling, and re-inventing her whimsical style in her home and garden.