Reflections Along The Way

Do It Yourself – Tulasi Kota

The Tulasi plant is considered very sacred in Hindu tradition. Tulasi means the incomparable one. There are many mythological stories in Indian mythology explaining the reason for worshipping the Tulasi plant. Apart from the religious significance, the Tulasi plant has great medicinal qualities which can cure many ailments. Hence, in Hindu tradition, it is encouraged for every home to have a Tulasi plant. This plant is traditionally grown in a fort-like yellow or red planter decorated with ethnic rangoli or/and symbols of worship.

Tulasi Kota

When I got inspired to have a Tulasi Kota at our home, I initially researched to see where we can get one. In the US, I did not find one that I liked and the ones that I felt were a good compromise were too expensive. That is when I started thinking about doing the planter myself. The first challenge was to find a planter in the appropriate size and shape. After spending a few hours online, I found the one I liked at Lowes. The 14-inch x 14-inch concrete planter was perfect. I wanted a base for this, for which I selected a 16-inch x 16-inch concrete block. These are not available for shipping. The planter and the concrete block are quite heavy. Make sure you take someone along to help load these to your car. I’m thankful to my husband for helping to bring these home. I decided on red to be the base color for the concrete block and yellow for the planter. Spray the paint on and let it dry for at least a couple of hours.

Concrete Planter and Spray Paints

I spent some time thinking about the design to paint and the colors to use. It may help to do a rough sketch on paper to visualize before you paint on the planter. I decided to use only red, white, and green colors for the design on the planter with just white on the base. The design I chose was a traditional rangoli in the center with red and white dots as borders. I used acrylic paints to hand paint the design. You can use a charcoal pencil to lightly draw the design on the planter before you paint if you wish. 

Work in Progress

It took me a couple of days to finish painting. I once again had to request my husband and son to help me carry the planter to the patio after I completed painting the design. Be careful while carrying these, as they are extremely heavy. Once they are outside, get them prepared to sustain the weather outdoors by spray painting with a clear primer. I am hoping that this is enough protection for the paint to last for a long time outdoors.

Ready to be spray painted with a clear primer

As the winters are pretty harsh where I live in Virginia, I didn’t want to plant the Tulasi directly in the concrete planter. Instead, I used a 10″ inch round planter for the Tulasi plant and this sat in the Tulasi Kota comfortably. This will give me an opportunity to bring the plant indoors while the concrete Tulasi Kota can stay outside, during the cooler times of the year. 

Completed Tulasi Kota

You can purchase the Tulasi plant on Etsy, Amazon, or at your local Indian store. Or just request a few seeds from a friend who already has one. It is pretty easy to grow the plant from seed. A few weeks before taking on this project, one of my friends gifted me an adorable small 3-inch Tulasi Kota. I grew the plant in this with seeds shared by a friend.

A small 3-inch Tulasi Kota

I hope I’ve provided all the details for you to have your own Tulasi Kota at your home. If you have any questions, please comment down below and I will be happy to share my experience while doing this project.

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