The Rustic Trellis Planter

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Introduction: The Rustic Trellis Planter

This is my first ever instructable and entry into the Planter Challenge. I designed an element of the planter in Tinkercad as well, and I'm thrilled to combine my hobbies of woodworking and 3d printing into one project!

When I was thinking about the goal of accentuating the natural climbing tendency of the plant I chose (a clematis), this idea came to me, so I jumped right in!

Step 1: Trellis Design

I wanted to support a number of small tree branches in a bit of a spiraled cylinder, so I used Tinkercad to design this feature. I started out with a simple 180mm tube shape with a wall thickness of 1. I placed a number of tubes evenly spaced around the large central tube, then angled each one to 10 degrees to facilitate the spiral effect I planned on making with the branches.

I manipulated the slicer settings for the size of my printer and adjusted the Z height to 10mm and printed the first trellis ring at 180mm diameter. I changed the scale in the slicer to 160mm for the second trellis ring so that my trellis would have a slight taper at the top.

If you wish to print your own, here's the link to the STL: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2956751

Here's the link to the tinkercad file: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:2956751

Step 2: Making a Suitable Base

I had a tree in my back yard that was hollowed out and in danger of falling, so I had it cut down a couple years ago. I thought this would make an excellent rustic base for my planter, so I grabbed a section from the firewood pile.

My father taught me that every natural object has a personality, and it's our job to put its best face forward. In this case, I needed my planter to sit flat, so I rolled the log around on the ground to find its best natural resting point. Once I found that spot, I cut the log in half and headed to the workshop to build the sides.

Step 3: Scrapwood Sides

Once I was in the wood shop, I went to the scrap pile to find some material for the sides of the planter. I scribed the underside of the scrap and cut to the line on the band saw. Then I pre-drilled countersunk holes for the screws that I used to fasten the side to the base. I repeated the process for the other side.

Step 4: Gather Trellis Supports

I cut some sticks from some wild shrubs growing in the back yard and whittled them where necessary to fit into the 3d printed trellis supports. I tried to cut each stick between 3 and 4 feet long.

Step 5: Anchoring the Trellis

I used the larger trellis support to drill a few holes that would accept the trellis branches. I drilled the holes on a bit of an angle, trying to match up with the 10 degree angle in the trellis support. I went around the ring and drilled for every support branch and fed them into the ring. Once this was done, I fit the top ring to the branches to tie them all together.

Step 6: The Finished Product!

I did have to take one trellis branch out to be able to plant the clematis. I also didn't get quite the twist that I intended with the support angles, but I think it still turned out spectacularly! I'm really happy with the overall look and theme of the planter, and I hope that you enjoyed reading about it and try to make one as well!

If you enjoyed this article, please consider voting for me in the Planter Challenge! Thank you!

Planter Challenge

This is an entry in the
Planter Challenge

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    6 Comments

    I always like these better than commercial cut wood ones. These look more natural and they always weather better.

    1 reply

    Thank you very much for the comment! I was really pleased that the cost was nearly zero on this project...just a few screws and the PLA for the 3d printed part. Most of the time, I manage to spend a fortune to make something that's inexpensive, lol!

    Super cool, I wonder how hard it would be to hollow out a normal log with chisels to create natural side peices.

    1 reply

    Thank you, I wouldn't say it would be hard, but maybe time consuming. I'd probably drill out a half log with forstner bits first, then go to the chisel work.