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This past Mother’s day, I spent the day with my mother doing what she loves best… gardening! After stopping at two neighborhood nurseries, we realized her love for succulents may have gotten her in trouble. She had purchased more plants than she has actual planters for in her container garden. So what’s a son to do? This son took the opportunity to dust off his miter saw and built a modern elevated succulent planter based on Ana White’s take on a Home Depot workshop project. A few cuts of wood later and some potting soil, my mother has a brand new planter unlike anything we could have bought. It fits perfectly next to all of her other planters on her patio and knowing that it took only an afternoon to put together, well, that made it all the better! Keep reading to see the full tutorial on how I put together this quick little garden project.
Paver Planter: What You’ll Need
And of course, you’ll need potting soil and plants!
The first step in any DIY project is sourcing materials! Since this is based off a Home Depot Workshop tutorial, you can head over to their Garden and Lumber section to source your pavers and wood. However if you are light on cash, I am always a big fan of checking out your local Habitat for Humanity ReStore to see what recycled goodies you can use instead. If you can’t find any pavers, take a look to see if stone tiles or other natural materials can work instead. Depending on where you live, you may not find the same size pavers. The original tutorial called for a larger paver, but since I couldn’t find them, I opted to cut down the entire project by half and make a mini-planter.
Since this project features the modern square leg design, I needed to cut the wood into 2 different size pieces. A larger 11-3/4″ for the four corner posts and eight smaller 7-3/4″ pieces for the lateral supports. The 1/4″ is taken out to allow for enough room for the pavers to slide into place and for the landscape adhesive.
After the pieces were cut, I sanded, stained, and sealed them. The wood was weather-treated so this is purely an aesthetic choice. Then, I began constructing the legs into the signature square base design. This is where your speed square will come in handy if you have one. Wherever two pieces of wood came together I added some wood glue and secured the pieces with self-tapping screws. You can also use regular decking screws here, but just be sure to pre-drill or you will risk splitting the wood. You may get away with using a pneumatic nailer, but I would reinforce the joints with a few nails.
Once the legs are constructed, you will need to add the wood piece that will support the pavers. It is important to measure where this piece should be (7-3/4″ from the top) so that your pavers will line up accordingly. I recommend adding the pieces on the legs first and then move on to joining the sides together. The last part to building the frame is too screw in the support pieces for the plants. You will want to add these laterally in the same direction as the legs and spaced equidistantly apart so that the weight of the plants are evenly distributed.
Now that the frame is finished, we can begin gluing the planters into place. In hindsight I would have grabbed a heavy-duty adhesive that was clear or can be stained. If you can’t find any, you will want to work quickly cleaning up any spills before the glue dries. I used a rubber mallet to gently push the pavers into place. You will want to make sure the pavers line up with the exterior edge of the planter. This will create a seamless look and maximize the planting area. Once you are content with the paver placement, grab your ratchet strap and secure the pavers in place. Let dry for a few hours before you move on to the next step.
Now that the landscape adhesive has had a few hours to firmly set, you can move on to prepping the planter for plants. Using a very delicate touch, you can begin draping the landscape drainage fabric over the planter. Take care not to move the pavers too much as the glue needs a full 48 hours to cure completely. Staple the landscape fabric onto the wood support pieces and trim the excess. Once the internal part of the planter is covered with the landscape material, you can begin potting your plants.
This paver planter uses all weather-proof materials to make a stylish addition to your garden. Fill it up with succulents or herbs like mint and dill that you can use to top off your grilling recipes. You can even make a few miniature planters at varying heights for a cool double-use centerpiece on your outdoor table. For a project that only takes a few hours (and a couple glasses of lemonade), you can’t beat this paver planter!
Would this elevated planter make you want to garden this spring? Let me know in the comments!