Build a Wooden Terra Cotta Planter Stand

Build a Wooden Terra Cotta Planter Stand

The Struggle of the Plant Parent

As a self-proclaimed plant parent, I have zero problems finding plants I like or convincing myself to bring too many home. But the true struggle lies in finding stylish and affordable planters to put them in. Simple ceramics are fairly easy to source, but for something unique or more decorative, it gets challenging. This is why my plants will often sit around in their original plastic pots for a long time without getting planted in a forever home.

Sometimes, it goes on so long that I’ll resort to planting them in basic terra cotta pots. There’s nothing wrong with those, and I’m a fan of the low price tag, but I figured there’s an opportunity here to come up with an easy way to make them more modern. That’s where this project comes in – building a wooden terra cotta planter stand.

A Modern Spin on a Classic

These plant stands, though simple to make, are on the longer side when it comes to time commitment due to the drying times. I’ve noted those in the instructions, but the fuss is still very low. Definitely worth it for how much they elevate your basic terra cotta pots through a minimal and modern design.

To get started, you’ll need:
– 14 square basswood dowels
– A saw and mitre box
– E6000 adhesive
– 3-5 terra cotta pots
– Black and white paint
– Foam brushes

I marked the measurements on the wood with a pencil and cut two dowels at a time using a mitre box to help keep the cutting straight while holding the dowels against the box with my left hand. The wood piece measurements are as follows:
– 4 x 3.25″ for the squares
– 4 x 3.75″ for the squares
– 4 x 5″ for the pillars

For the shorter stand, the 4 pillars were cut to 3.5″ each. The pieces that make up the squares are the 3.25″ and 3.75″ pieces – each square is comprised of two of each, with the 3.25″ pieces on the top and bottom and the 3.75″ pieces on the left and right.

Assembling the Wooden Stand

I made two of these squares and used the E6000 adhesive to attach them at the corners. It’s better to dot on too much glue and wipe off the excess after attaching than to apply too little. This glue takes time to set and will require either clamping or patiently holding/pushing the corners by hand until it dries a bit. I’d estimate it takes about an hour to completely dry, so while you wait, you can build a second one, paint the terra cotta pots, go run an errand, work on another project, read, watch TV, or even eat – great excuse to go do something fun!

Next, I glued on the pillar pieces. I only did two at a time because they won’t hold their weight until dry, so having them rest against the table is necessary. I waited until it completely dried before gluing on the other two, which was another hour of patience.

Lastly, I glued on the second square piece on top of the pillars. Again, I waited until it completely dried before moving on – yes, more waiting, but I used all the drying times to paint the terra cotta pots and work on other projects, so once all the glue dried, I was ready to plop the plant in.

Sturdy Enough for the Job

Now, you might be wondering, how sturdy are these stands? Glue isn’t ideal for longevity, I agree, but as long as the plant/pot weight is kept small and the stands are handled very gently, it should hold pretty well. All my experiences with E6000 have been excellent, and I’ve really come to trust the hold.

If you still don’t feel good about it, you can use a nail gun to attach the corners together. This was actually my initial plan, but the only nail gun I could find for 23G pin nails (very small and basically invisible) required an air pump attachment, which I don’t have realistic access to. Also, the room for error is super small given the thinness of the dowels, so glue was overall much simpler and really sufficient for my needs.

Versatility is Key

These stands will be able to support the weight of air plants forever, absolutely. I ultimately prefer the stands with the potted ivy, but I so appreciate having the option to switch it up if I feel like it. Air plants or potted plants – it’s so beautiful either way.

So, what are you waiting for? Head to your local craft store, pick up the supplies, and let’s get building! And don’t forget to check out Timber Building for all your woodworking and DIY needs.


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