Simple DIY Vertical Planter for Flowers

DIY Vertical Planter for Balconies and Small Patios

This month the Farmhouse Hens are collaborating on outdoor buildings or planters. If you don’t know about the Farmhouse Hens its a small group of my blogging friends, who collaborate once a month on various topics. I always look forward to working with the Hens and I am sure you will enjoy their projects linked at the end of my post.

Our yard is really sunny,  which I prefer, except for my pansies.  Pansies are both Hubs and my favorite yard flower and they don’t do well in bright sunlight.   So this year I made this little hanging basket for the privacy wall,  it should keep the pansies shaded during the hottest part of the day.  If it doesn’t work in this spot, I can easily move it to another part of the back yard fence.


Vertical Garden Supplies


Large shopping tote, preferably seagrass (I got mine at Ikea)

Parchment paper, a small  circular object like a shot glass or pill bottle

Pencil, ruler, sharpie

Sewing pins

Carbon paper

Large piece of heavy plastic 3 by 4 feet approximately



17 – Small annual plants,

Potting soil

Hot glue and a glue gun

Exacto blade, scissors

Chopping board

Nails or screws


Make the Pattern (optional)

The DIY vertical planter has a series of one-inch holes throughout one side.  The easiest way to make the pattern for the plants symmetrical is to draw out a pattern first.  If you prefer to freehand the placement of your potting holes, by all means, you can do that.  I am a planner so I started by creating a symmetrical pattern.

Each row is 3″ apart with staggered markings.  To keep it symmetrical I started by finding center and then working outwards in even increments on each side.

Lay the grass bag on top of the parchment paper and trace the outline.

Fold the paper in half to find the center.


Tutorial for DIY vertical flower planter for small spaces.

Row 1 starts two inches from the bottom.  Find the center and mark X, add more marks every six inches towards the edges on both sides.

Row 2 starts 5″ from the bottom.  Do not place an X at the center.  Measure 4 1/2 inches on each side of center, then at 6 inches towards the edges on both sides.

Row 3 is like row 1, except you start 8 inches from the bottom.  Find the center and mark X, add more marks every six inches towards the edges on both sides.

Row 4 is like row 2, except you start 11 inches from the bottom.  Do not place an X at the center. Measure 4 1/2 inches on each side of center, then at 6 inches towards the edges on both sides.

Row 5 is again like row 1, but this time you start 14″ from the bottom. Find the center, mark X, add more marks every six inches towards the edges on both sides.

If your bag is larger than mine just continue up the bag adding rows every three inches until you reach the top.

Tutorial for a DIY planter for small yards, balcony or patio.

Making the Circles

Using a ruler as a guide, place a circular object over each X mark as close to center as possible.  Don’t fuss about being really accurate as the plants will grow and make the pattern forgiving.  Close is good enough.

Making a DIY vertical planter idea for small yards, balconies, or patios


Repeat the process until you have all the circles drawn.

A DIY vertical planter for small yards and outdoor spaces
How to make a vertical garden using a shopping bag and small plants

Transferring the Pattern

Pin the pattern squarely to the top of your basket to hold the pattern in place.  Place a sheet of carbon paper between the pattern and the bag.  Trace out all the circles, moving the carbon paper as needed.  Occasionally lift up the parchment pattern to make sure the carbon is transferring.  Once all the circles are transferred remove the pattern and set it aside for later.

Cutting the Potting Holes

To prevent fraying apply hot glue before cutting.  To make sure the glue penetrate between the fibers of the seagrass fabric, make sure the hot glue is very hot.  Plug the glue gun in for at least ten minutes before starting.  When you need to replace the glue, leave the glue gun for another ten minutes before continuing.

With the hot glue gun make an outline of each circle.  Let the glue dry until hard and cool.

Cutting holes in a DIY planter for small spaces

To protect the back side of your bag insert a cutting board inside the bag before you start cutting out the circles.  Once the cutting board is in place, use an Exacto knife to make a hole inside of each circle(you will cut it neatly with scissors later), it doesn’t need to be exact, just make sure you don’t cut through the hot glue outline.

Remove the cutting board and using scissors cut out as much of the circles as you can without cutting into the glue.

The pattern for planting a DIY vertical planter for small spaces.

How to make a vertical garden using a shopping bag and small plantsAdding a Plastic Liner

A plastic liner will keep the water inside your vertical planter, and to prevent the seagrass from getting dirty.  I had some leftover heavy plastic in the garage, but you can use a heavy shopping bag, or the bag from the potting soil as long as it is large enough.

Fold the piece of plastic in half, cover with the template and cut an inch inside, the outline of the pattern.

Staple one end closed.  Slide inside the bag to see how it fits.  Cut off more plastic from the open side if needed.  Once you’re happy with the size staple the second side and insert into the bag.

With a Sharpee trace inside all the circles, remove the plastic liner.  Cut out the circles with scissors making them larger than the markings.


A Easy DIY planter tutorial for a vertical planter for small spaces.

Planting the Vertical Garden

The size of the plugs on your plants will decide which way you insert them into the circles.  Mine are large so it was easier to work from inside the planter and push the plant through the circle to the outside.  If your plugs are smaller you can plant them from the outside, pushing the plug root end into the planter.  I think that way is a little easier on the plants, but that said all of mine survived.

Planting small annual plants and flowers in a DIY vertical planter.

Plant the flowers in rows.  Place a little bit of soil in the bottom of the planter.  Add the first row of flowers, fill with soil, and repeat.

Planting flower in a DIY vertical planter for small spaces.

We had snow a couple of weeks ago (stupid eh), so these pictures are taken right after I finished putting it together.  One side is a bit bare because the baby plants need time to grow.  I hope you can envision how pretty it will be once they have the chance to grow.


Easy to make vertical flower garden idea.


farmhouse hens decorate DIY group


Farmhouse Hens Decorate, DIY, do it yourself, projects

Using leftover oak and barn wood to build tall raised beds in my small railroad ties garden that I built two years ago in my yard.Oak Raised Beds in My Garden

Tarah at Grandma’s House DIY! Blog / Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest / Twitter

Farmhouse Hens Decorate, DIY, do it yourself, projects

Recycled Cans As Planters Chas' Crazy Creations

Recycled Cans As Planters

Chas at Chas’ Crazy Creations! Blog / Facebook / Pinterest

Farmhouse Hens Decorate, DIY, do it yourself, projects

Planters with The Farmhouse Hens DecorateRepurpose An Old Mop Bucket Into A Garden Planter

Michelle at Our Crafty Mom! Blog / Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest / Twitter

Announcing a fun collaboration of several bloggers called Farmhouse Hens Decorate! Fall Vignette, Kitchen Project, Homemade Christmas Ornament, Wall Art

Planters with The Farmhouse Hens Decorate Vintage Farmhouse Planter

Sam at Raggedy Bits! Blog / Facebook / Instagram / Pinterest / Twitter

How to make a simple vertical garden for small spaces.


    1. I am not the best gardener but I am determined to water this planter regularly and keep an eye on my pansies. Hopefully, I can get updated pictures when its full of flowers.

  1. Such a cute idea, Leanna and perfect for an apartment balcony or small porch/deck space. The pansies are going to be amazing when they fill out. Pinned 🙂

  2. This is such a fabulous idea, Leanna! Look out for all the prettiness when the pansies and lobelia go nuts!!

  3. Leanna, your flower purse garden planter is really cute! Love this idea for adding summer fun to the garden. Pinned! <3

    Barb 🙂

  4. This is so cute! And I love how you decorated it.

    1. Thank you Debra. I am really looking forward to the pansies growing and filling the planter in.

  5. Leanna, as always I am in awe of your creativity! I would LOVE one of these hanging bags for my outdoor space. It’s so unique and I like how you can move it easily if it isn’t in a good spot. I look forward to the Farmhouse Hens Challenge every month! Pinned! 🙂

    1. Thank you Michelle. Pansies are such a cute flower, and I am determined to find a place in our yard for them to thrive. I love the Hens as well, and that mop bucket you used in your post is brilliant. So many memories.

  6. It’s going to look amazing when all the pansies take off. They’re my favorite flower too. In Afrikaans, we call them “gesiggies”, which means “little faces” . So apt because they do look like little faces that are always smiling and happy

    1. Oh my god Michelle. That is why they are my favorite. I always say they remind me of little faces turning towards the sun. How fun is that!!! Thank you for telling me. I bet your yard is amazing, I would love to see it.

  7. This is super cute Leanna! I love the colors and how wonderful it turned out my friend. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thank you Chas. I wasn’t able to wait until the pansies had grown in. Patience should make it even prettier. Glad you like it.

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