The Art of Darkness

Skull Planters

May 21st, 2014 by Cobwebs

Skull Planters

Hey, look! It’s one of those smack-your-forehead-for-not-thinking-of-this-yourself ideas. I saw these neat planters online and tracked down a couple of secondhand sources which mention them as being sold by One Teaspoon. I unfortunately can’t find any mention of them on the site, so it’s possible they’re either discontinued or only sold at brick-and-mortar locations. (How quaint.)

A more general search for “skull planter” turns up a few entries on sites like Etsy and Amazon, but they lack the deep eyesockets which are such an interesting additional planting area.

No matter; with a cheap plastic skull and a little bit of paint, something reasonably similar should be a piece of cake. Make sure that the skull is one of the two-piece jobs where the skullcap pops off and, um, pop it off. You can also remove the lower jaw if desired; it’s often attached with metal hardware that will rust (although you may view that as more of a feature than a bug). The eyesockets in the planter appear to be larger than in most real skulls, and also seem to angle downward a bit. If you aren’t sure whether your model skull’s eyes will hold enough packed soil to support a plant, you may want to cheat a bit and break out the backs so they connect with the brainpan; it’s all going to be covered with dirt anyway, so the holes won’t be noticeable.

Add a little shading and detail with plastic-friendly paint, then fill with potting soil. Choose plants that are relatively shallow-rooted and slow-growing: The succulents in the picture are an excellent choice, as would be a specimen cactus. You might also fill the skull with miniature-leaved ivy, letting it slowly twine around make the skull look overgrown and mysterious.

If you can find an appropriately-sized glass bulb it might also be fun to fit it over the top of the skull, not only turning it into a terrarium but also creating one of those strange exposed-brain aliens so beloved of 50s science fiction: The monster with plants for brains!

A leafy skull or two would be lovely perched in a sunny windowsill or as a focal point in a flower bed.

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