Easy Tiered Planter

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There is a corner of my garden that has been empty since we ripped out some invasive ferns last fall. I’ve been trying to figure out what with it, and I found the perfect solution on Pinterest. An inexpensive DIY tiered planter.

This project is ridiculously easy, and can be done almost for free if you have pots sitting around like I do. If you don’t have pots sitting around, shop for them at garage sales where you can get them for very cheap or even free. It took me less than 20 minutes to complete this project, and that includes the time it took for me to find the perfect pots in the garage (and taking the pictures for this post).

For this project you will need:

  • Three or four pots that are nestable. Each pot should be smaller than the one below it, allowing enough room for the plants to grow. All of them should have drainage holes on the bottom.
  • Dirt – I recommend using potting soil, not garden dirt.
  • Plants

Plan to build this planter wherever you want to put it. It will be heavy and difficult to move once you have it completed.

Nestable pots for tiered planter

Place the largest pot on a level service. I put a flat stepping stone under mine to help level it out (it doesn’t look level in this picture, but it is). Fill the pot with dirt, pack the dirt and level it.

Fill each pot with dirt, then stack the next pot on top

Center the next largest pot on top. Press it into the soil a bit to stabilize and level it, then fill it with dirt. If you want it even more stable, you can bury it an inch or two into the dirt. Continue centering and filling the smaller pots on top until you have your tiered planter completed.

Finished tiered planter (please excuse the blurry photo)

Once you have the tiered planter built, simply add the plants. Be sure to include some cascading plants to add even more interest to your new planter.

Tiered planter after planting
Tiered planter after planting

Now all that’s left is to brag to your friends about how you built this cool tiered planter for practically free!

The thing I love the most about this planter is that all the pots are different, making it totally unique. This project allows you to be creative; mix and match pots with bright colors to create a pop of color in the garden. Or use pots with different textures to create visual interest. You could make a couple of them and put them around the yard. Each one could be completely different, or they could be the same. The possibilities are endless.

One thing to note: My planter is in a protected corner where it won’t be affected by wind or weather. If you plan to put your planter in an open area, I would recommend using ceramic or clay pots. If you want to use plastic pots, you could put rocks in the bottom of each pot to add weight. This will help ensure it won’t tumble over in a strong wind.

Updated August 17, 2012 – Here’s a picture of what it looks like filled in…

Tiered planter filled in with plants
Tiered planter filled in with plants



 

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