How to Build an Outdoor Planter Bench


An outdoor planter bench, as the name signifies, is a bench with a planter box at each corner, allowing you to sit and relax amid fragrant flowers, shrubs or mini trees. You can build this functional and decorative way of adding color to a spot along with providing seating arrangement at home. Place it in your patio, backyard or garden on its own or along with other chairs to create seating for yourself, family or friends.

Step 1

Lay both the 1-by-4-by-21-inch boards and 1-by-4-by-94-inch boards next to each other on your worktable. Starting at one end, measure and mark every 16 inches on the boards. Lay a carpenter's square over the marks and draw a straight line that stretches across both pieces. Drill two countersink holes on each end of the 1-by-4-by-21-inch lumber and on each mark you made with the square.

Step 2

Apply wood glue to the longer ends of the wood boards and place them between the shorter pieces of lumber, ensuring the joints are flush. Attach them with galvanized wood screws.

Step 3

Glue both ends of the 1-by-4-by-19 1/2 lumber and insert it between the two 1-by-4-by-94 lumber, just over the 16-inch marks you made in Step 1. Also, glue the ends of the other four 1-by-4-by-19 1/2-inch lumber and insert between the longer lumber. Secure them in place with wood screws.

Step 4

Apply wood glue to the top edges of the cedar bench frame. Lay the six lengths of 1-by-96-inch lumber over the frame and join with wood screws.

Step 5

Measure and mark 24 inches in from each end of and down the center of the bench. Also measure and mark 10 1/2 inches in from the sides. The point where they meet determines the spot for the planter. Measure and draw a 13-inch-wide circle over the spot, and cut with a jigsaw.

Step 6

Hold both 18-inch lengths of two-by-four parallel to each other. Insert a 15-inch-long two-by-four between the two and attach it with wood screws at the corners. Also place the other 15-inch-long two-by-four at the other side and secure with wood screws to form one box. Make three more boxes the same way.

Step 7

Stand four 24-inch lengths of lumber inside two boxes, allowing them to overhang by 3 inches. Attach them in place with wood screws. Flip the box and repeat the procedure so you have a planter box. Insert the pot inside the planter box. Align the bench so the holes are over the pots, and lower it carefully.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 lengths of 1-by-4-by-21-inch lumber
  • 2 lengths of 1-by-4-by-94-inch lumber
  • Measuring tape
  • Carpenter's square
  • Drill
  • Wood glue
  • Galvanized wood screws
  • 5 lengths of lumber, 1 by 4 by 19 1/2 inches
  • 6 lengths of lumber, 1 by 4 by 96 inches
  • Jigsaw
  • 8 lengths of lumber, 2 by 4 by 18 inches
  • 8 lengths of lumber, 2 by 4 by 15 inches
  • 2 15-inch-wide ceramic pots


  • Ron Hazelton's Housecalls: How to Build a Planter Bench
Keywords: planter bench, outdoor planter bench, wooden planter bench

About this Author

Tanya Khan is a freelance author and consultant, having written hundreds of thousands of words for various online and print sources. She has an MBA in Marketing but her passion lies in giving her words wings.