Plant Succulents in Salvaged Metal Outdoor Furniture

upcycled metal table used as succulent garden container

I recently spotted some truly clever succulent gardens planted in salvaged metal outdoor furniture, and I just had to share this genius upcycling garden idea with you. (FYI: I found these projects at UT Gardens in Knoxville, Tenn., the same public garden where I saw this adorable container fairy garden.) Succulents are the perfect choice for this upcycled container garden project because they need excellent drainage and drier soil. The metal container keeps airflow and drainage to a maximum. But how does the soil not just fall through the holes in the salvaged table? There are two answers.

First: landscape fabric. It’s not immediately apparent, but the tabletop was lined with landscape fabric before the soil and plants were added. Check it out.

landscape fabric lines the bottom of the salvaged metal planter

Second: rocks. The designers of this container completely encircled the tabletop with large rocks, hiding the edge of the landscape fabric and creating a kind of raised bed on top of the table in which the soil could be added and contained.

rocks lining the edge of the salvaged table container garden

Next to this table is a fantastic upcycled bench created the same way. I love how the fan shape of the bench back frames the garden planted in the seat — it’s like a flourish announcing and mimicking the shape of the beautiful succulents below!

a salvaged metal bench used as a succulent container garden

Just like on the tabletop planter, the seat of the bench is lined with landscape fabric and then encircled with large rocks to hold the soil in. The designers also topped the soil with bark mulch to help prevent erosion, and they painted the metal bench a beautiful purple hue that coordinates well with the purple-blue touches on the echeveria planted in the center.

rocks hold in soil on the salvaged metal bench planter

If you want to capture this look at home, start with upcycled metal planters and use these how-to tips for planting succulents in containers. Be sure to line the bottom of the planters with landscape fabric like they did here! And show us your results by posting on Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter with the hashtag #maderemade.

And if you like this project, I know you’ll love these additional ideas for upcycled container gardens below.

6 Responses

  1. hiding the edge of the landscape fabric and creating a kind of raised bed on top of the table in which the soil could be added and contained.

  2. Pete says:

    Interesting ideas indeed!! To make a garden before a house very attractive and refreshing views I think such ideas worth following. I'm so excited to keep up with such ideas. Thanks.

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  6. Sue Langley says:

    Very creative ideas! We are all over this hot trend of recycled and UPcyclyed gardening,…we love haunting the thrift shops and flea markets to find good junk for the garden and succulents are perfect in our unusual containers….I'll have to bookmark this post!
    Sue at Flea Market Gardening http://www.fleamarketgardening.org/

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About Kelly Smith Trimble 

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I grow vegetables wherever I can find enough sunlight and forage roadsides and hiking trails for plants that can be used to make natural dyes. You can find both vintage ...

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