Turn Galvanized Buckets Into Window Box Planters

Bring a touch of rustic holiday charm to your front yard with planters made from galvanized buckets and basic lumber.

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Photo By: Brian Patrick Flynn

Bye-Bye, Bare Windows

Just because it's winter, that doesn't mean your exterior windows have to be bare. Keep your curb appeal in check with this easy project. You'll need: galvanized pails (number per window will depend on the width of your window); drill; 1/4-inch drill bit; 2 1/2-inch exterior wood screws; 2 1/2-inch exterior masonry screws; 2-inch metal screws; small shrubs (cypress, cedar, arborvitae); spool of linen, raffia or burlap ribbon; 1x3-inch pressure-treated pine; hot glue sticks; hot glue gun; birch log slices or pinecones; twine; potting soil; drop cloth; exterior spray paint.

Measure Window Width

Measure each window that will be outfitted with planters. Use a measuring tape to determine the proper width from the outside right edge to the outside left edge of each window ledge. You'll need this dimension when picking up a pre-cut piece of 1x3-inch lumber from the hardware store (or cutting a piece of lumber to size) which will be used for attaching the buckets to the home's exterior.

Spray-Paint Wood

Update the lumber with exterior spray paint. To ensure an even finish, keep the can held at least 8 inches from the surface of the wood, applying the paint in even, controlled spurts. Let dry.

Add Holes to Wood

Create pilot holes for attaching each bucket to the lumber and also for attaching the lumber directly to the window ledge. Drill holes for the window ledge attachment approximately 1/2 an inch below the top corners of the lumber. To do this, position the buckets in place, then drill the pilot holes directly through the buckets and into the lumber.

Add Embellishments

Bring holiday charm to each bucket with a spool of linen, raffia or burlap ribbon in your chosen seasonal color scheme. Wrap the ribbon around the bucket, then fasten it in place along the back with hot glue and a glue gun.

Create a Layered Look

Add a few extra layers of interest to each bucket by pairing different colors of ribbon together in different widths. For extra ornamentation, add birch log slices to the front of each bucket by attaching them with twine. A similar look can be achieved with pinecones.

Attach Buckets to Wood

Once the buckets are completely decorated, fasten them directly to the lumber by drilling 2-inch metal screws through the pilot holes.

Add Greenery

Before fastening the planter to the window ledge, add soil to each bucket and dry fit each potted shrub to ensure a perfect fit. It's much easier to do this on the ground rather than after the planter is installed. Once the fit is snug, remove each shrub but keep all of the potting soil inside of the buckets.

Fasten to Trim

With the help of a friend, hold the 1x3-inch lumber up against the window ledge. Once in place, secure the lumber to the ledge with 2 1/2-inch exterior wood or masonry screws using a drill. Place the shrubs inside of the buckets and water right away to ensure survival.

Winter Greenery

Repeat these steps to add chic, upcycled planters to as many exterior windows as you desire.