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DIY Planter

Hi, yesterday I amazed myself but knocking up a DIY planter using some cheap (and skewed) plywood that my neighbour had no use for. The only problem is it looks like wood that may rot over time especially when it has damp soil in it.

I was thinking of painting it blue to match our shed, but do I need to treat it with anything else prior to or post painting? I don't expect it to remain in good condition for decades to come but if it sees a few years worth of use that would be good.


Last edited: 05 June 2017 11:37:52


  • plant pauperplant pauper Posts: 6,234

    The problem with plywood is not the wood but the glue holding the laminations together. There is such a thing as Marine ply which is suitable for outdoors but if that's not what you have you'll find that the layers separate PDQ. You might get a couple of years out of it but I can't think of an easy way to treat it to proof it.

    Slap a couple of coats of ducksback on it. It's a great water repellant but don't put anyting in it that can't be easily moved. 

  • neal4neal4 Posts: 19

    you could of course use some plastic to line it with provided you put holes in it for irrigation.  I may help the wood last a bit longer .

  • Torg22Torg22 Posts: 299

    Thank you for your advise, it gives me something to think about for sure. Nothing permanent will be going in it anyway (some chilli plants and whatnot) so even if it does only last a couple of years it wont be the end of the world.

  • StevedaylillyStevedaylilly Posts: 1,076

    Tbh don't expect it to last very long as any water ingress will expand and break standard ply down. Obviously, you have constructed the planter so possibly give it a pva sealer to protect it and then 2 or 3  coats of Duckback. I have constructed some timber planters out of timber gravel boards. I applied 3 coats of Duckback and lined then with some spare pond liner. 

  • Torg22Torg22 Posts: 299

    Cheers, the onslaught of rain hasn't helped over the last few days either, I will be sealing it with paint at the weekend but it could have done with being sealed straight away. I will see how it gets on. I don't really want to go out and buy further products as spending on this planter is not a priority at present hehe.. Perhaps I will get one year out of it image

  • BeartricksBeartricks Posts: 21

    I made some planters this year out of an old, pine, double bed we had taking up space in the loft.

    I'm not expecting them to last long, but I gave them a liberal coating of some clear outdoor varnish I found at Homebase. Only problem is that it wasn't cheap. Seems to have given it a matte, plastic coating but as far as I'm aware it wasn't polyurethane. I also put them on cheap casters from Screwfix.

    Anything polyurethane or similar will keep the moisture out indefinitely if you recoat every couple of years. You could also paint it first, then varnish, but you wont be able to repaint it without revarnishing again afterwards. The only issue is that you'll need to keep the wood off the floor as the coating will break down quickly if it's in contact with it and the water will seep in. Your problem is that it seems as if you've already got rainwater in there, so if you coat it with anything now it'll just rot from the inside out.

    Best bet would be to hope for some hot weather to dry the ply out. I don't think it'll last long in any case, but if it's free and does the job then it's not a huge loss.

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