*Ribbit*: Repair and Makeover for a Garden Planter

Rescue and makeover an old chipped garden container, giving it a facelift and new life with this easy-to-use filler and paint!

Happy Monday, I hope you had a good weekend! It’s HOT, humid and dry here. . .it must be August. ;)

This frog garden planter has lived a long life. I’ve had him 25+ years and he has acquired plenty of warts and cracks during that time. He’s made out of heavy duty clay material that is stronger than a normal terra cotta, which is why he hasn’t just crumbled away after all these years outdoors. He’s been sitting empty for a couple of years and it was time to either discard him or see if I could do a little repair and give him a much-needed facelift.

I strolled the aisles of the paint department at Lowe’s, searching the fillers and spackle for a product that might work to repair the cracks, and ultimately picked up some Platinum Patch Advanced Exterior Filler.

The product information says:

Platinum Patch provides exceptional weatherproof protection that prevents discoloration, cracking and crumbling. It has strong multi-material adhesion to tough porous and non-porous materials making it ideal for exterior applications such as the installation, finishing or repairing of fiber cement siding, PVC trim board, vinyl siding, metal, composite, concrete, brick, wood and more.

Platinum Patch creates a strong, durable bond that won’t crack or lose adhesion over time and is also is sandable, paintable, easy water clean-up and low in odor. Exterior/Interior use.

. . .Sold!

I hosed him down and let him dry thoroughly before beginning to remove any loose dirt and debris. The worse crack was along his mouth, with a couple of hairline cracks along the bottom. The product information reads: One application is usually sufficient for small repairs, but for repairs deeper than 1/8”, apply two or more layers. May be sanded and/or painted in 2 to 4 hours depending on temperature, humidity and depth of fill. Allow product to fully cure before exposing to water, approximately 24 hours.

Using a putty knife I added the patch to the cracks and crevices, smoothing it out as much as possible. I allowed the first application to dry half a day in the summer heat, before adding a second coat. After it was completely dry, I sanded it using a sanding block and gave it a day to cure completely before I began painting.

Note: Follow the directions on the package and warning for sanding as Platinum Patch contains crystalline silica and sanding may generate dust which can cause adverse respiratory effects and eye and skin irritation. If you have respiratory problems, it advises to wear a NIOSH‐approved dust mask or wet sand to avoid dust.

Now the makeover fun begins! I had some leftover She Shades, a chalk-based paint formulated for exterior surfaces, that I used to refresh some other garden ornaments.

I gave him a base coat of “Iron Gate”, a nice deep gray. One of the benefits of using chalk paint, is how quickly it dries, in about an hour or less, especially outdoors in the summer heat. I was prepared to give him two coats, but one coat was enough to cover the terra cotta.

I used the same method as with my birdbath and beehive hose keeper. I wanted a finish that would mimic the appearance of a lead garden ornament, so I dry brushed a layer of “Farmhouse Linens” and then “Evening Eucalyptus” on top of the “Iron Gate”.

If you’re not familiar with ‘dry brushing’, it’s a paint technique using an almost dry brush to apply paint. Dip the ends of your brush in the paint, then blot your brush on a some paper towels or newspaper (I used a piece of cardboard) wiping most of the paint off, before lightly dragging your brush over the surface.

I recommend practicing on a scrap piece of wood to get the hang of it and starting on an inconspicuous place first.

Here’s how Mr.Frog looks after his facelift with his patch and new paint finish.

Mr. Frog is now ready to have his belly filled with flowers! I used a ready-refill I found at the garden center at Lowe’s with a combination lantana and spike, both heat tolerant, unlike me. ;)

Here’s his profile and side view. . .

It’s a good thing Limelight Hydrangeas like the heat and are drought tolerant! Showers and storms have been all around us but we’re extremely dry, having received less than a 1/4 inch of rain in almost three weeks with temps in the 90s.

The backdoor of my Potting Shed is needing a little decoration but I’m waiting for cooler temps so my brain will engage and I can come up with some inspiration. ;)

I’m outdoors early every morning with my hose and watering can in hand trying to keep everything from expiring in the summer heat.

If you’re looking for an easy to grow, low maintenance shrub in your garden that will provide you with both beautiful cut and dried flowers, plant a Limelight Hydrangea or 5!  If you need more convincing, read: How To Grow Limelight Hydrangeas.

The winners of my daylily giveaway are

Lisa Caldwell and Kathy M.

I’ll be in touch with you for your shipping addresses to get your daylilies to you!

If you’re in need of an exterior fill product for holes, cracks or crevices, I highly recommend you hop over to your local home improvement store and pick up some Dap Platinum Patch Advanced Exterior Filler! It was extremely easy to use, worked as promised and saved Mr. Frog from his demise.


Thank you for your visit, sharing with:

 Metamorphosis Monday

  43 comments for “*Ribbit*: Repair and Makeover for a Garden Planter

  1. Terri
    August 12, 2019 at 7:52 am

    Great job! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Gina Buffum
    August 12, 2019 at 7:56 am

    Wow! That was an interesting tutorial! Thanks.

  3. Jane
    August 12, 2019 at 8:01 am

    Mr. Frog looks great! Mary, you can do anything!! You have that special touch.
    I planted some Hydrangeas this year. They were doing great until either a deer or rabbit decided they were hungry, but only ate on one side. Planted one on each side of my archway going to the outer backyard. My husband put a little fence around them and it helped.
    Thanks for sharing your great ideas…….
    Happy Monday!

  4. Donna Maurer
    August 12, 2019 at 8:03 am

    What a great job! Great way to reuse ,recycle and in this case refresh. Your potting she’d and flowers are gorgeous. Mr frog is also. Love your blog.

  5. August 12, 2019 at 8:06 am

    Fabulous makeover for your frog!

  6. Terri
    August 12, 2019 at 8:13 am

    Mary, this technique may be just the ticket for refreshing my favorite garden bunny. We have wicked squirrels that take joy in chewing off his finish!

    Try to stay cool. Our NC temps are to hit the higher 90s over the next couple of days.

  7. Ellen
    August 12, 2019 at 8:13 am

    Thank you for the info on repairing outdoor decor and painting techniques…yours turned out beautiful…CONGRATULATIONS to the Daylily giveaway winners!! Have a great day!!! ❤️🐸🌾

  8. August 12, 2019 at 8:18 am

    Thanks for sharing Mr. or Miss Frog’s makeover! Great tutorial. Mary, we have become really dry over the past week, sprinklers are running this morning. Our high is 97 today, I will be staying inside with the grands. Stay cool!

  9. Sue
    August 12, 2019 at 8:22 am

    Your Limelight Hydrangeas make a nice backdrop for your “new” frog.

  10. Ann Woleben
    August 12, 2019 at 8:28 am

    I always appreciate your research and advice when tackling a garden-related problem. Looks fantastic!

  11. Liz
    August 12, 2019 at 8:47 am

    You did such a great job on it! Love the color you chose. The backside of your shed is so charming. Love the red door and shutters and the frog looks perfect where you set him! 🐸

  12. june fisher
    August 12, 2019 at 8:53 am

    Well done!
    I’ve asked a couple of times about the sign you had on the door of your potting shed, it appears unfindable:)
    Love your blog!

    • August 12, 2019 at 11:16 am

      Hi June, I replied about the sign but my emails must be going to your spam folder. In case you check back to this post and your comment, you can find the oval Potting Shed sign on Amazon, here.

  13. Clara
    August 12, 2019 at 9:13 am

    Great makeover Mary! Mr. Frog looks brand new & I love the paint job. He’s good for another 25 yrs. Your talent is boundless. Congratulations to the winners. Stay cool, we are in heat warnings this week. Clara 💕🐸

  14. Ellen
    August 12, 2019 at 9:26 am

    That is one happy looking frog, or should I say “hoppy”! How creatively you gave new life to this lovely frog container. I love the colors you chose too. I imagine that you are every bit as delighted to have saved your adorable frog as he is. Thank-you for sharing this product, I will tell my Son (the gardener)!

  15. Rita C.
    August 12, 2019 at 9:35 am

    Your frog prince is quite handsome in his facelift! Love the floral arrangement too.

  16. August 12, 2019 at 9:40 am

    Mr. Froggy looks brand new! I love makeovers, and I am definitely going to get some Dap Platinum Exterior Patch & Filler, I have some rotting wood places at the beach house which could really use it, thanks Mary! Try to keep cool this week!

    • August 12, 2019 at 10:49 am

      Hi Jenna, Sounds like the perfect use for Platinum Patch! ♥

  17. Kathy Vause
    August 12, 2019 at 9:47 am

    I would love to plant some hydrangeas, but alas, the deer love them. Any suggestions?

    • August 12, 2019 at 11:10 am

      Hi Kathy, Have you tried Liquid Fence? It may be worth a try…🦌

  18. August 12, 2019 at 10:04 am

    Thank you for your great review of the Platinum Patch, Mary. I have two things outside that could use a makeover. One of them is a frog planter that I’ve had for 34 years, and he has a detached foot. I just haven’t been able to part with him because he was a gift from a neighbor. Thank you for your tutorial in using the paints, too. I hope you stay cool 😎!

  19. Chloe
    August 12, 2019 at 10:20 am

    You saved Mr. Frog! Nice job. Thank you for sharing your method and products.

  20. Franki
    August 12, 2019 at 10:36 am

    Well, that was riveting!! Fantastic makeover! I’m looking for “the people version…” franki

  21. Nancy Brantley
    August 12, 2019 at 11:22 am

    Ribbit looks great!…..what can you not do!!!! You are amazing with your talent! Stay cool, we’re going to be over 100 heat index a couple days.

  22. August 12, 2019 at 11:31 am

    Great Post, Mary. This is interesting. When I was doing pottery, I often did some rustic hand made terra cotta pieces, notorious for cracking when done from slabs. I would use terra cotta stained acrylic based tile grout to fill in the holes after wetting the pieces to allow for a good bond. Then the pieces were sealed and stained to bring out the details, amazing everything was ‘whole’ again. With the freezing and thawing cycles we have been having–storing your DRY garden statuary in a shed is a good idea!

  23. Pat
    August 12, 2019 at 12:00 pm

    As always so informative and inspiring. Franki
    expressed just what I was thinking as I was reading!

  24. Brenda McCrary
    August 12, 2019 at 12:01 pm

    Love your garden and projects. Thank you for sharing!

  25. Cyndi Raines
    August 12, 2019 at 12:07 pm

    Awesome job Mary! He looks better than new! I love it when we can salvage much loved items and they turn out so well. I will pin this for future reference. Hope your weather cools off some or at least a bit of rain to help with all the watering. 🐸❤

  26. Debbie
    August 12, 2019 at 12:20 pm

    Mr. Froggy looks good as new. Would you recommend ch paint for Adirondack chairs? Love your blog. Please give the girls a hug for me.

    • August 12, 2019 at 12:44 pm

      Thank you Debbie! As long as you used a chalk paint formulated for exterior surfaces like She Shades, that would work for your chairs!

  27. Mildred
    August 12, 2019 at 1:38 pm

    Mr. Froggie looks better than new. I like his new color and filler. 😎🥵

  28. August 12, 2019 at 2:02 pm

    Is there anything you can’t do? I’m in awe of your clever ways and endless energy for all that you accomplish. Froggie looks very nice in his updated look. Great job! I adore your Mrs. Powers garden ornament! Is that on a post or is this the tuteur? I have the tuteur, but have yet to get her planted. I’m waiting for our new courtyard. Curious if this is the same or a different piece on a stake.

    • August 12, 2019 at 2:11 pm

      Thank you Sarah {blush}…it’s the tuteur. I placed it the center of a container to give it some height and let the coleus grow up around it. A new courtyard sounds like an exciting project, I’ll look forward to seeing it! 🌸

  29. August 12, 2019 at 2:10 pm

    Well he looks much better. And those Limelights are out of this world gorgeous!

  30. Kathleen Crigler
    August 12, 2019 at 2:11 pm

    Wow!!! Mr. Frog looks fantastically cute! You did a beautiful job transforming him. Loving your blog!!

  31. Jan McF
    August 12, 2019 at 3:51 pm

    Mr Frog turned out great! You’ve inspired me to possibly try to paint some similar outdoor objects. Thanks!

  32. byhomeia
    August 14, 2019 at 5:22 am

    wow! It’s wonderful! I always appreciate your research and advice when tackling a garden-related problem. Looks fantastic!

  33. August 15, 2019 at 9:22 am

    Oh my goodness, you gave him a fabulous facelift!….In my opinion, he looks better!! Love the look and I am sure he does too!!!…May he have another 25 years of beautifying the garden! Beautiful job Mary!

  34. DeAnn Ott
    August 15, 2019 at 6:21 pm

    Love your blog Mary, Mr frog looks so happy after your remake.🐸

  35. August 16, 2019 at 11:05 am

    WOW!!! He looks amazing! I also didn’t realize how big he is til the pic by the limelights. I bet he FEELS better too:):)

  36. Sandy K Park
    August 19, 2019 at 3:08 pm

    Good job, Mary. Now he’s good to go for another 25 years. Have a ribbiting good day.

  37. Robyn Henningsen
    September 18, 2019 at 11:44 am

    I loved this post so I picked up some Dap Platinum Exterior Patch & Filler @ the hardware store and ordered 3 jars of She Shades chalk paint…Farmhouse Linens, Evening Eucalyptus and Iron Gate. I had several garden statues and a small bird bath in dire need of new paint and repair. I got my paint Monday and I got busy. I was so happy with the results. The She Shades paint is awesome and I plan to order a couple more colors for other projects on my list (of many)!!! Thanks again!

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