Easy to Make Painted Rock Cactus Centerpieces

Inside: Fun and easy painted rock cactus centerpieces.

Last month, we celebrated my son's high school graduation with a little Tex Mex taco party. He's leaving the Seattle area and heading to the great nation of Texas to attend college, and while we were visiting colleges on our college tour, he fell in love with Tex Mex. What's not to like really? I couldn't think of a better theme for his graduation party, so I created these painted rock cactuses {cacti?} as centerpieces that we used around the party. They cost me next to nothing to make and look great. It's an easy DIY craft you can do and I promise, even the blackest thumb can't kill these plants! 

rock cactus centerpieces

What you need to make DIY Rock Cactus

Easy painted rocks

How to make Easy Painted Rock Cactus Centerpieces

  1. You will want to find or purchase your rocks in the shape of cactus. Recently, I created some stone garden markers. While I was picking up rocks at the beach, I had my eyes peeled for cactus shaped rocks as well. But if you can't find any, you can usually purchase various rock sizes at your local craft store.
  2. Next, paint each of your rocks. This was the most time-consuming part. If I was to do it over again, I might look into green spray paint. I do, however, like the depth and shading that you get from using several different paint colors. That's not something you can do with spray paint.

Do You Need to Prime Rocks Before Painting?

I didn't for these rocks. I think that's what gives them the variation of color in all of the rocks and makes them look more realistic. If you were painting rocks to sell or painting them as art pieces, I'd suggest priming your surface so that your paint goes on evenly and smoothly. But for this type of project, you can skip the priming!

How to Make a Fake Cactus

  1. Use your Sharpie paint pen and draw various designs on the rocks. Nothing fancy, just be creative and do what you like. 
I drew dots and lines and stars on mine. Literally the easiest thing ever! There's nothing fancy to this so don't over think it!

Painted cactus rock centerpieces

2. Grab your Terra cotta pots, I found my Terra cotta pots at a garage sale. I bought a stack of 12 for a few dollars. You can also pick some up for next to nothing on Amazon.

 3. Fill your pots with some old newspaper crumbled up in the bottom, then top them off with your decorative rocks. I put two handfuls of decorative rocks into the pot and then stood my cactus rocks upright. I used three cactus rocks in each pot and then sprinkled some more decorative rocks on top to help them stand in place.

Cactus rock DIY

DIY cactus rocks

I really love how these easily painted rock cacti turned out.  They only cost me around $5 to create twelve of them. I couldn't even buy a real cactus for that price! You can send them home with your guests after the party as a little gift. High school grads can take them along to their college dorm room as a fun decoration! I think most kids could keep these alive!

Easy painted rocks DIY

Fun fiesta decor ideas

More Fun Tex-Mex-Inspired Party Ideas

Here are a few more of my favorite Tex-Mex-inspired party ideas that will go perfectly with these painted rock cacti.

Easy painted rock DIY

I think these painted rock cactus rocks are lots of fun and the possibilities are endless! Let me know in the comments what your favorite Tex Mex taco party ideas are!
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