How to make a timber planter box - with Adam Dovile

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Whether you have a courtyard, cubby house or garden, a timber planter box is a great low-cost way to add colour and life to any outdoor space. Along with vibrant flowers, you can stain or paint your timber planter box for an extra pop of colour, or choose a classic finish to suit your style.

This timber planter box was created by Adam Dovile for 5-year-old Clare’s cubby house as part of Cabot’s Dream Decks for a Cause, but you can easily adapt it for your own space.  




Treated pine (quantity dependant on size of planter box you make)

Cabot’s Timbercolour Deck & Exterior Paint (500ml, 2L, 4L and 10L available,

Galvanised screws


Paint brush or roller

Drill or screwdriver

Soil and plants


DIY TIP: Your planter box will be in contact with soil and moisture, so it’s important to use a durable timber like treated pine.  

1 Cut the timber

Cut the timber to size to make a rectangle planter box. These planter boxes are about 300mm long.

2 Drill pilot holes

Drill pilot holes in the two ends (the shorter pieces) to ensure the timber won’t splinter when you insert the screws.

3 Drill drainage holes

Drainage holes will ensure the soil doesn’t get waterlogged and cause the plants to develop diseases. Drill three or four drainage holes into the planter base.

4 Paint the timber

Paint each side of the timber with Cabot’s Timbercolour Deck & Exterior Paint in White for a beautiful finish that will withstand the elements. Leave the timber to dry for two hours, then recoat.

DIY TIP: Cabot's Timbercolour  Deck & Exterior Paint is a premium acrylic self-priming exterior paint which will protect the timber against UV, mould and rot.



5 Attach the pieces

Position the two sides against the base and secure with galvanized screws. Galvanised screws are better for outdoor planters because they can withstand the elements and won’t rust.

Use a drill to make sure each screw goes through each hole and into the adjoining board. (You can also use a screwdriver).



6 Secure the ends

Repeat step 5 with the two end pieces, so you have a box.



7 Hang the planter

Attach the planter to the cubby house (or other vertical surface) by driving four screws through back panel into each 2x4 block.

DIY TIP: Decorative brackets can be added under the window box for additional support.


8 Fill the planter

Add a thin layer of gravel in the bottom of the timber planter box to allow excess water to drain. Cover the gravel with soil, filling the box to about 3cm from the top. Add plants and give them a good watering.


For more information about products used as part of the Cabot’s Dream Decks campaign and Adam’s project, visit