How to Make a Succulent Snail Topiary

Your new garden friend is easier to make than you think. Use two hanging basket planters, foam pieces, and moss to create this adorable garden ornament.

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This friendly garden snail topiary is the perfect addition to any patio or garden. Prep succulents a day before you start this project—the succulent cuttings will need to develop scabs where the stem is cut. To prepare, simply remove succulent plants from their pots and wipe away any excess dirt. Clip succulents, leaving a stem to insert into the snail. The day of, prepare your moss by dampening. Soak your sphagnum moss in a bucket and squeeze out any excess water.

Once your beloved snail is finished, find him a home on the ground in your garden or in a low pot on a patio. Water him thoroughly once a week!

What You Need

  • 2 identical 12-inch metal hanging baskets
  • 2 coco liners (1 foot x 1 foot)
  • Succulent or cactus soil
  • 2 florist foam blocks
  • Cardboard
  • Cable ties
  • Wooden dowel (12 inch x 0.75 inch)
  • Foam egg
  • Hot-glue gun
  • Wooden dowel (12 inch x 0.25 inch)
  • 2-inch foam cone
  • Wooden dowel (12 inch x 0.19 inch)
  • 2 foam balls (1 inch x 1 inch)
  • Sphagnum moss
  • Preserved sheet moss
  • Floral wire
  • Wire clippers
  • Sheet moss with adhesive backing
  • Succulent plants
  • Floral clippers
  • Floral pins
  • Screwdriver

Step 1: Fill Baskets

To make snail body, first fill each basket halfway with soil. Place one floral block in each basket and finish filling with soil.

Step 2: Join Baskets

Place cardboard on top of one basket. Firmly hold and flip onto the other basket top. After making sure basket halves are lined up, slowly pull cardboard out. Before completely removing cardboard, secure baskets together with a cable tie. Continue doing this while slowly removing cardboard completely. This will be the body of your snail.

Step 3: Make Body Parts

Head and Neck: Insert 0.75-inch dowel into foam egg in desired position and secure with low-temperature hot glue. Wrap dowel in coco liner, securing with floral wire.

Tail: Insert 0.25-inch dowel into bottom of cone shape and secure with low-temperature hot glue. Wrap dowel in coco liner, securing with floral wire.

Antennae: Cut 0.19-inch dowel in half and insert cut dowels into both foam balls. Insert antennae dowels into head.

Step 4: Wrap in Moss

Body: Wrap with sphagnum moss and secure with floral wire. Finish by wrapping with preserved sheet moss and secure with more floral wire.

Tail: Wrap with sphagnum moss, maintaining a cone shape, and secure with floral wire. Finish by wrapping with preserved sheet moss and secure with more floral wire.

Head and Neck: Wrap with sphagnum moss, maintaining a head shape, and secure with floral wire. Finish by wrapping with preserved sheet moss and secure with more floral wire.

Antennae: Use small strips of adhesive moss sheets to wrap antennae dowels and secure with hot glue if needed. For the foam balls, cut 3-inch circles from adhesive moss sheet. Clip darts around the circles so they can be placed over the foam balls. Use hot glue to secure if needed.

Step 5: Add Head and Tail

Poke a hole into the shell body and insert head portion. Use floral wire and floral pins to secure if needed. Repeat with tail portion.

Step 6: Add Succulents

Use an awl to poke holes through moss and liner and insert succulent roots. Leave a little growing space between plants and if needed, secure with floral pins. Insert your succulents in your pattern of choice—we chose to do a spiral.

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