Succulents are a huge decorating trend right now. They’re everywhere, due in large part to the rising popularity of terrariums and succulents’ place in those. But this DIY pumpkin succulent project is a fun, simple, and unique twist on the standard terrarium.
It’s perfect for fall and Thanksgiving holiday décor – use these on your Thanksgiving dinner tablescape to add fresh appeal and personality. Best of all, because the succulents in this example are artificial, you can pull them out when the pumpkin is done, wash them off, and reuse next year. Enjoy!
- Mini white pumpkins, proportionate to your succulents
- Artificial succulents (these were found on Amazon, although they’re also available at any local craft store in the floral department)
- Drill, pumpkin carving knife, spoon (not shown)
White pumpkins can have a particularly tough outer shell, so I’ve found it easiest to predrill a starting point for carving out the top of the pumpkin. If your pumpkin is slightly askew, as this one is, be sure you drill at a point that is directly perpendicular to the table surface when your pumpkin is sitting flat.
You want the hole to be at the top of your “seated” pumpkin more than centered around the stem. Drill into and through the upper shell.
With your pilot hole started, it will be easy to carve out the top of your pumpkin. You only want to take about 1” or 1-1/2” out of the top of your pumpkin so your succulent will rest easily on the pumpkin itself.
Use a pointed, serrated knife to begin at your pilot hole and carve a small opening.
Pull out the stem and empty the seeds.
Measure your succulent against the opening on your succulent.
Use wire cutters or tin snips to cut the succulent stem at that point. (Alternatively, you can simply bend it, depending on the size of the inside of your mini pumpkin.)
Place the succulent into the mini pumpkin. Settle it down into the pumpkin’s belly. Ideally, the end of the succulent’s stem will dig slightly into the bottom of the pumpkin’s insides.
I love the look of a succulent’s “growing” out of a miniature white pumpkin.
If your mini pumpkin is slightly bigger than the succulent, however, you might want to make a few adjustments, because the shell is thicker and requires a slightly larger hole.
Again, carve an opening around the stem (that is small and also parallel to the table top as the pumpkin sits alone). This one forgot the predrill, which was a mistake. Oh well.
Remove the stem.
Scoop out the seeds and pumpkin’s insides. Scrape the inside walls clean.
Notice how much thicker this pumpkin’s shell is. The succulent is going to look a little too small, perched on top of this even slightly larger pumpkin.
Bend (or cut) the succulent’s stem to fit inside the pumpkin.
Then, using your sharp serrated knife, trim at an angle around the hole. This will allow the pumpkin’s opening to sort of cup the succulent’s shape more securely.
Set the succulent down inside this larger mini white pumpkin. It has a different look than the first pumpkin succulent – more like a pumpkin pot holding a succulent on this one, whereas the first one with a very mini pumpkin resembles a package with a succulent bow on top.
Both methods are endearing and subtly vibrant.
We love the unique twist on succulents in white mini pumpkins here. You could experiment with other colors and styles of pumpkins or gourds, as well. Perhaps spray painting some mini pumpkins gold would be a fun foil against the organic simplicity of succulents.
These will look lovely on a mantel, on a shelf during the fall season, or even on the Thanksgiving table.
We hope you love these sweet little DIY decorations for the autumnal holidays. Happy DIYing!