Hypertufa, which was invented for use in alpine gardens, is a manufactured substitute for tufa – the porous rock that forms around mineral water springs. Alpine gardeners traditionally used antique animal water troughs as planters, but there was obviously a limited supply of these. Containers made with hypertufa are more porous and much lighter than the water troughs, so they are ideal alternatives. Hypertufa planters in the original trough shape are still popular, however it is possible to make them in many shapes. The smaller containers are really quick and easy to make – this one is made using a plastic basin as a mould.