Sure, you can head to the local garden center or home improvement store to buy a planter for your favorite plants – but why would you want to when it’s easy to build a rustic log planter?
Building your own DIY rustic log planter is a great way to use up dead pieces of wood. Plus, it will add a ton of visual interest to your yard. If you’re already working with a rustic design scheme, building one of these planters is the way to go.
Check out these gorgeous 17 log planter ideas, and after the ideas, you’ll find tutorials on how to easily build both horizontal and vertical planters.
17 Rustic Log Planter Ideas
1. Vibrant Red Petunias
The petunia is one of the easiest flowers to grow, and when you choose bright, attention-grabbing shades of this pleasant annual, you’ll create the perfect backyard display. Planting them in an upright, hollowed-out log planter doesn’t hurt, either!
2. Miniature Rustic Log Planter with Succulents
You can even grow succulents in log planters! In fact, succulents are some of the most common plants to grow in log planters, since they are incredibly low-maintenance. You can grow one type of succulent or plant a medley for a stunning visual effect.
3. Yellow Springtime Blossoms in a Rustic Log Planter
The yellow blooms in this countryside display really set off the understated log planter, don’t you think?
4. Simple Hollow Log Planter
This rustic log planter is simple, yet beautiful. It can be as large or as small as you like. This one is positioned on additional logs to make it easy to move (yet prevent it from sliding around while it’s in use). What a great idea!
5. Blossoming Flowers in Rustic Log Planter
This log planter provides the perfect accent to a plain white backdrop. Rustic planters like this have their place in all kinds of architecture, from antique to more contemporary styles.
6. Rustic Log Planter Before Planting
If you’re curious what the inside of one of these planters looks like before soil and plants have been added, wonder no more! This rustic log planter is made out of a hollowed out tree trunk. It’s a simple DIY project that makes the most of dead and dying logs you might already have kicking around on your property.
7. Driftwood Log Planter
We already showed you how you can easily grow succulents in a log planter – but did you know you can use driftwood, too? You don’t have to have a perfect-looking log (if there ever was one!) to make your planter. A piece of driftwood you find washed up on the beach should do the trick, too.
8. Weathered and Distressed Log Planter
The more distressed, the better! At least when it comes to making your own rustic log planter, that is. This unique log is the perfect backdrop for planting succulents, cacti, and other plants. It has a ton of character that will make it a focal point in your backyard!
9. Single Succulent in Log Planter
Whether you choose to grow one plant or dozens of them, a rustic log planter is the best way to make the most of a minimalist landscape.
10. Dense Planting in Horizontal Log Planter
Here’s another way to grow vibrant red petunias in a rustic log planter! Petunias don’t mind being a little crowded – take advantage of their friendly nature by growing them in a rustic log planter like this one.
11. Pansies in a Log Planter
These pansies provide an elegant and formal foreground to a more rugged and rustic log planter. That kind of stark contrast just can’t be beat when you’re trying to create a memorable landscape!
12. Elevated Rustic Log Planter
Log planters are beautiful and appealing, but they can be tough to maintain if you have to constantly crawl around on the ground to weed, fertilize, and care for your plants. This log planter solves the problem by elevating the planting area – and isn’t it gorgeous?
13. Short Rustic Log Planter
You don’t even need an entire log to create your own one-of-a-kind planter. Even a small chunk of wood will do the trick!
14. Window Log Planter
This log planter goes well with the log cabin background. As you can see, you can use a log planter in any location – even as a window box planter!
15. Flowers in Log Planter
This simple planter is brought to life with gorgeous purple flowers.
16. Decorative Window Planter with Rustic Log
If you don’t want to permanently attach a rustic log planter to your window, you can build a portable option like this one. Although this picture is in black and white, adding flowers to the display will help you bring color to your life – both indoors and outside.
17. Succulents in Upright Log Planter
This kind of succulent is known as the “jelly bean succulent,” and isn’t it fun to look at? When you grow a succulent in an upright log planter such as this one, it’s not only attention-grabbing with tons of visual appeal, but it’s easy to care for, too.
How to Build a Rustic Log Planter
Building your own rustic log planter is easy. You don’t need a lot of tools or technical know-how – just a bit of hard work and dedication toward getting the job done.
There are several ways you can build a DIY log planter, but one of the easiest ways is to build a horizontal planter that lays flat on the ground.
However, if a horizontal planter doesn’t fit with your plans, you can also make a tall, upright planter out of a tree stump or turn multiple logs into one cohesive planter. You’ll see dozens of ideas in the photos below if you are looking for inspiration!
How to Build a Horizontal Log Planter
- First, find a log. White pine is a good choice, as it’s a softwood and easy to work with. You can also use a hardwood species, like maple. It will last longer but can be more difficult to cut.
- Cut the lines with a chainsaw to make grooves in the wood, covering the entire surface of the log with grooves. These should be relatively uniform, but don’t stress if they aren’t all even in length, width, or depth.
- If you don’t want to use a chainsaw, you can also use a drill press to cut into your log. You will need to make several overlapping cuts with the hole saw until you reach the desired log planter opening length (in most cases, about three inches).
- Using a screwdriver, pry out the pieces between the cuts. Remove as many as you can with a hammer and the screwdriver to notch out the wood. You’ll end up with a semi-hollow log planter.
- Use some topsoil and other add-ins, like sand, peat moss, and fertilizer to fill your log planter. Sometimes, it’s easier to wet the mixture before you add it to your log. This way, it will pack down into the log.
- Then you can plant in your log container. Consider adding activated charcoal to the bottom of the wood log planter, which will help with filtration and prevent rot, both of your plant roots and of the wood.
- You can either grow plants from seed or transplant your favorite options in your new log planter. You can grow anything in a log planter, including flowers, vegetables, herbs, and even succulents.
- Water deeply after planting to make sure the container does not dry out. That’s all there is to it!
How to Build a Vertical Log or Tree Stump Planter
Here you’ll see how to drill and build a really nice tree stump planter.
Uses for your Log Planter:
- Plant flowers in them: Consider these perennial flowers.
- Fill them with succulents. (My personal favorite)
- Make a herb garden: picks some fast growing herbs.
- Make a strawberry garden
Over time, log planters will eventually rot out. However, you should get several years of use out of your planter before this happens. By building your own rustic log planter, you’ll be able to create a one-of-a-kind, inexpensive container to grow all of your favorite plants. Consider trying one of the designs above – or create your own! – for a stunning display.