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Past Articles Library | Gardening Design | Building a Rail Planter

Building a Rail Planter

How would you like a nice, cheerful planter that fit on the rail on your porch?  They are not hard to build.  First, you need the following supplies:


2 ends 3/4” X 5” X “7

2 sides 3/4” X 5” X 18”

8 side rails 3/4” X 3/4” X 18’

6 end rails 3/4” X 3/4” X 8 1/2”

4 spacers 3/4” X 3/4” X 1 1/2”

Other supplies:

Brad nails


Cypress, redwood, or pine are the recommended woods for this project.  Cypress and redwood do not rot, and pine is inexpensive and will work well when painted.

1)  Butt the short sides inside the longer sides.  Fasten with glue and brad nails.

2)  Mount one small rail on each end of the short sides of the box with glue and brad nails.

3)Mount one long rail on each long side of the box, sitting atop the short rails, with glue and brad nails.

4)  Mount another short rail on each short side of the box with glue and brad nails.

5)Turn the box over and mount one short rail on each short side of the box with glue and brad nails.

6)  Mount two long side rails, side by side, on each long side of the box using glue and nails.

7)  Mount a spacer on each corner with the longest part parallel to the short rails using brads and glue.

8)  Mount one more long rail along the long side of the box with nails and glue.

9)Turn the planter over and paint if desired.  Mount on the rail and fill with dirt and your favorite plants.


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Use Edgings

Nothing finishes off a flower bed like low, long flowering edging plants.

Alyssum, lobelia, and dianthus are great for just this purpose.

For good continual flowering, also fertilize every few weeks with a balanced fertilizer like a 15-15-15.

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