How to Build Strawberry Planters


Strawberry jars are popular planters for growing strawberries.These vertical containers are filled with multiple, evenly spaced holes in the sides of the container through which strawberry plants may be placed. By planting strawberry plants vertically, you grow the fruit off the ground and keep it away from ants and other bugs that often eat holes into the ripe fruits. Growing the plants vertically will also increase circulation around the plants and improve the yield.

Step 1

Cut the top off the barrel with a utility knife and rinse thoroughly.

Step 2

Drill a series of 3-inch-diameter holes in the side of the barrel with the drill and spade bit. Each hole should be 8 inches from its neighbors in rows 8 inches apart. Stagger each row of holes.

Step 3

Mix granulated fertilizer into 35 gallons of potting soil, using a trowel. Use fertilizer amounts as recommended by the fertilizer packaging. Fertilizer amounts vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.

Step 4

Fill the bottom 2 inches of the barrel with coarse gravel.

Step 5

Drill ¼-inch holes throughout the PVC pipe. Make each hole 2 inches apart from its neighbor in rows that are 2 inches apart. Stagger the holes in each row.

Step 6

Stand the PVC pipe on its end on top of the gravel. Fill the pipe with coarse sand.

Step 7

Shovel soil into the barrel on top of the sand until the soil level is even with the first row of holes. Firm the soil around the bottom of the barrel.

Step 8

Remove strawberry plants from potting trays. Slip the root ball through the holes and arrange the roots in a fan shape on the soil. Do not cover the crown (bud) with soil.

Step 9

Fill the barrel up with potting soil to the second line of holes. Sprinkle the soil with water. Repeat this process until the barrel is full and each hole contains a fruit plant.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic 35-gallon drum
  • Utility knife
  • Garden hose
  • Drill
  • Spade bit
  • ¼-inch drill bit
  • Potting soil
  • Balanced, granulated fertilizer (10-10-10)
  • Trowel
  • Shovel
  • Coarse gravel
  • 4-inch diameter PVC pipe (same length as drum)
  • Coarse sand


  • University of Florida IFAS Extension: Growing Strawberries In Barrels
  • Mississippi State University Extension: Strawberry Jars Offer "Holey" Opportunities
  • University of Minnesota Extension: Strawberries for the Home Garden

Who Can Help

  • Oregon State University Extension: Growing Strawberries in your Home Garden
Keywords: DIY strawberry container, homemade strawberry planter, making strawberry jars

About this Author

Tracy S. Morris has been a freelance writer since 2000. She has published two novels and numerous online articles. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets," "CatFancy," "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World."