DIY Projects

July 30, 2015

DIY: Vertical Garden Planter

Lauren Petroff shares step-by-step instructions on how to make a vertical garden planter. 

Lauren Petroff headshotA vertical garden is a great way to add life to a bland patio or small balcony. But while they’re lush and beautiful, they can be a big investment, so I created a hanging planter that’s inexpensive and fairly easy to make.



You’ll need potted plants, nylon rope, cedar boards, square, clamps, saw, drill, hole saw and adapter, pole brackets, dowel.



 Step 1: Determine shelf dimensions

Cut 1″ x 6″ cedar boards to size. I wanted four rows of four 5″-diam. plant pots with 3″ of space at each end and 2″ between each pot, so I needed four 30″-long boards. (Plan to make the holes for the pots 1⁄2″ smaller than the pots’ lip diameter so they won’t fall through.) Then, cut a 11⁄4″ dowel to 34″, or about 4″ longer than your boards.


Step 2: Drill pilot holes

Drill eight holes in each board: four for the rope and four for the pots (see template). Measure 3⁄4″ in from each corner of the boards, make a mark for the rope holes and drill a small pilot hole here. Next, make four marks, 51⁄4″
in from the ends of the board and 61⁄2″ apart from each other, for the centres of the pot holes. Drill small pilot holes at each mark. Repeat on each board.


Step 3: Drill holes for rope and pots

Clamp boards to a work table to hold them steady. For each board, with a 3⁄8″ drill bit (1⁄8″ larger than the diameter of the rope you’ll use to hang the planter), drill four holes for the rope, using the pilot holes in the board’s corners as guides. Next, with a drill adapter and 41⁄2″ hole saw, drill the four holes for the plant pots, again centering them on your pilot holes.


Step 4: Assemble planter and hang

Screw two pole brackets 34″ apart into an exterior wall or sturdy fence, rest the dowel on top and loop two lengths of 1⁄4″ nylon rope over the dowel. Working one board at a time, thread the rope through the corner holes and tie knots below the board to hold it level. Repeat until all four boards are attached. The top board should be 15″ from the dowel, and the others should be 12″ apart. Set plant pots in the holes and enjoy!

Tip: Use pots with drainage holes so water trickles down through the planter.

Author: Lauren Petroff

Angus Fergusson (room)/ Alex Lukey (portrait)


House & Home June 2015