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How to make a lead wall planter

You will need

  • Roll of lead, 45cm x 300cm, from any builder's merchant
  • Marine plywood, 30cm x 85cm
  • 18 clout nails (large-headed, galvanised nails)
  • 3 pots
  • Saw
  • Metal snips, hammer
  • Rag or old duster
Do it: all year round
Takes just: 2 hours


This modern take on the traditional hanging basket will liven up any a dull wall. This stylish lead planter looks elegant, but it's surprisingly easy and quick to make. Plant it up to suit your location: ferns on a shady wall, succulents in a hot and sunny spot, or with pretty campanulas spilling out of the pockets, as here, for a cottage garden in partial shade.

How to do it


Cut a piece of lead that's 7.5cm larger than your piece of marine plywood all the way round, with metal snips. Position the wood in the centre of the lead and fold over the edges so it is held tightly to the board. If necessary, trim off any excess at the corners for a neater finish.


Cut three triangles of lead, 30cm x 25cm x 25cm. Fold over a 5mm strip along the longest edge to give a softer edge. Cut about 3cm off the bottom point of the triangle.


Mould the triangles into a shape resembling half a funnel - it helps to form it around a small flowerpot. Pinch the bottom edges together and leave a 1.5cm flap at each side, which will be used to attach the pocket to the lead-covered board.


Lay the lead-wrapped board flat and arrange the three pockets. Hammer them to the board with the clout nails, three on each side of the pocket (cover the hammer head with an old rag to prevent scratching the lead). Line the pockets with plastic, piercing it at the bottom for drainage, and plant up.

Our tip

To keep the metal pristine and avoid scratching it, work on top of an old towel, but don't worry if it does get marked as lead mellows when exposed to the elements.

Whole rolls of lead can be bought from DIY stores, but they can be heavy to carry, so try to get your roll delivered if possible.

Discuss this project

Talkback: How to make a lead wall planter
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julielillian 24/11/2011 at 15:29

hi i hope you can help me with
the problem i have a hardy fuchias
that has growen into a big plant,
about 2 ft across not flowering
well, what i can i do with it.
please help.

bellladyus 24/11/2011 at 15:29

This is a beautiful planter!

Please note....readers should be sure to NEVER plant edibles in a lead planter. I'm sure everyone knows this (and my apologies if this comment appears condescending), but lead is very harmful to ingest and plants will pull it into their fruits, etc.