Build Your Own Patio Planter from Wood or Concrete

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A perfect project for spring, building a planter box for your patio is simple and easy. Customize it to the shape and size you need and compliment your backyard landscape.
Wooden Planter Boxes
For a rustic or sleek look, use wood to build a planter. It’s possible to make almost any shape, but boxes in a square or rectangle are the easiest.
Work with deck boards or 2×6 lumber – the entire box shape including base and side can be assembled with these dimensions. A rim or lip can be built with planed 2×6 or you can switch up to 2×4 or 1×6.
Once you’ve built the box shape, remember to account for drainage and also soil retention. Line the box with heavy duty plastic or landscape fabric stapled into the inside. Poke or punch holes through the liner.

Stain the wood planter box before filling with soil or leave it for a weathered, natural look.
Concrete Planter Boxes
A little more urban and contemporary, concrete planters are easier to make than you think.
Start with a form consisting of an outer shell and an inner form. Make the inner form so that the finished thickness of the wall is at least 2″ thick – this will give you the necessary stability.
Coat the inside of the outer shell and outside of the inner form with motor oil or vegetable oil. This helps to work as a release agent.
Be sure to account for drainage as well. Drill holes in both of the molds and use a pipe or plug to keep the concrete out.
Buy a concrete mix that works well for exterior applications and add whatever pigmentation or coloring you want. Mix as per instructions.
Pour the bottom layer of the planter first and then place the inner form on top. Add concrete down each side right to the top and let the whole thing sit for at least 24 hours.
Once the concrete is dry, remove the shells and let it cure for a few days.
Mix and Match
Use both concrete and wooden planters in your yard and on the porch. You can build them for compact vegetable gardens, cascades of annuals and even bulbs and perennials. Use your imagination and a little hard work to make your backyard more colorful this season.

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