Faux Cactus W/ Zip Tie Thorns




Introduction: Faux Cactus W/ Zip Tie Thorns

Want to make a faux cactus using zip ties as thorns? You've come to the right place! I will show you how to make one in this Instructable :)

I love this project because the final product is cute, it uses unexpected materials, and its somewhat customizable.

How it is customizable:

-paint the pots however you want!

-choice of color for cactus

-you can add flowers to it at the end (not pictured. I am snowed in and cant get to the craft store!)

-you can use a different color of zip ties than white if you want!

-you can experiment with making "arms" for the cactus

Best part of the project? You'll get a lot of "WHOAH that is cool!"s and you wont even need to water them :)

Hope you enjoy!


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Step 1: Paint Your Pots

Use your paint to paint your pot(s) however you want!

Let dry completely.

Step 2: Foil Time! (if Applicable)

If you dont have a lot of rocks, you can put some foil in the bottom of the pots so you put less rocks in each pot.

You can glue the foil down if you want but the dried modge podged rocks will keep it from falling out of the pots!

Leave room at the top for a layer of rocks!

Step 3: Modge Podge Those Rocks

in disposable bowl, use a plastic spoon to mix rocks with modge podge.

Start out pouring less modge podge into the bowl than you think you need (pour less than pictured in the second picture if you dont want to wait a long long time for it to dry)

If you add too much modge podge you can add more rocks but that gets harder as your bowl gets more and more full of rocks!

Use spoon to put modge podged rocks into the pot(s).

Set aside to let dry completely.

Step 4: Create the Cactus!

1) make a circle with pipe cleaner and place on top of a pot to make sure its the size you want your cactus to be (you dont want to make the whole cactus then discover that its smaller or larger than you wanted!)

2) put about 2 zip ties per new circle of pipe cleaner to build cactus using the following tips

-sometimes I hooked the end of pipe cleaner into the cactus and other times I connected the end of pipe cleaner with an end of the pipe cleaner I was trying to add to the cactus by wrapping the ends around eachother

-when doing the zip ties, zip tie the newest circle to the previous circle

-don't pull the zip ties too tight. Pulling them all the way/too tight will create gaps in your cactus

-when you decide you like the height of the cactus, start making the coils slightly smaller than the previous one

-when you get to the end of the cactus, cut off any major length and stick the end down into the small hole at the top of the cactus to finish it off

-look at the almost finished cactus and decide where you need to add another zip tie to hold it together or for aesthetic purposes (theres a thorn where it looks like there should be a thorn)

Step 5: Give Cactus a Hair Cut!

Use scissors to cut your thorns down if you wish.

I suggest trimming a little off then looking at it and trimming more if you want to. Once you cut the thorns you cant make them grow longer!

Step 6: Optional: Add Flowers

(step not pictured)

Use hot glue or a glue like E6000 to attach a few small flowers to the cactus if desired

Step 7: Your Modge Podge Rocks Should Be Dry Now

I waited to do the next step until my rocks were dry. I guess it doesn't really matter if you wait or not because modge podge is an adhesive but I did.

Step 8: Glue Cactus to Rocks!

Use your glue to adhere the cactus to the rocks in the pot.

Normally I use E6000 for projects, but I used tacky glue for this step and it worked just fine!

I recommend tacky glue or glue that is stronger than tacky glue.

Make sure your cactus is placed where you want it to be in the pot (centered/off centered)


Your zip tie cactus is done!

Sit back and relax because you don't have to do anything to it to keep it alive!

Or make more of them like I will do so soon!

hope you enjoyed this instructable! please vote for it if you did!


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    2 Discussions


    3 years ago

    How have I not seen this before? This is great! I think it would come out really cool too if you made a bigger one, and used a shampoo bottle to wrap the pipe cleaner around to get a good cactus shape. Awesome job, this is really creative!


    Reply 3 years ago

    Thank you!!!! :) a friends family was getting rid of a green garden hose but someone already had done that idea apparently so I did pipe cleaners cause they are more common of an item or Easier to get. They do make large pipe cleaners which would make the shampoo bottle idea a breeze!!!