My most recent DIY project was making some of those sturdy cement planters that look so good on a patio. I have no experience with this material, so i thought best to start small.
Working outdoors, I poured about half the 40 lb bag of cement into a pail, and added my pecan husk bits (~4 cups). I decided to add water to the cement based on consistency, rather than actually measuring out the dry mixture and the water, and this seemed to work out alright--i just added enough water, mixing between additions, to reach a consistency that would settle without air pockets when i jiggled the pail.
I filled four containers using this pail of cement mixture. I let the containers sit outside for 24 hrs, and then pealed the plastic containers away from the cement. In places you could see a dark mahogany colored stain where the pecan bits leached a little. Only one of the four pots was soft enough for me to drill drainage holes in the bottom--i'm thinking that if i had taken the forms off a little sooner and drilled, i would have had more success making holes.
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