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Is your backyard too small for a garden? I’m going to show you how to make a raised planter box. So here are the materials I used to build this garden box. First thing I’m going to do is take my 4×4 8 foot long timber and I’m going to cut it to 3 foot lengths.
These are going to be my legs. So you see two legs cut out of one piece and I make sure I keep the factory ends on because their treated the best. Now we have our four legs cut, it’s time to decide how wide we want to make the garden box based on what space you have and how deep it is. I’m going to go 36 x 18 inches. So now I’m just going to cut my 2×4 to 36 inches and 18 inches. Everytime we’ve made a fresh cut we have to throw cut and seal on the end of the lumber, this is going to retreat the wood so that it doesn’t rot. So we’ve got our four short pieces and we’ve got our four long pieces, now we’ll screw them together to create a rectangular frame. So this is one frame, now we just repeat it and make two. Our frame is built, it’s just a matter of now installing the legs, so I’ll do that using two 3 inch screws on each face, two here and then two on this side. So now we’ve got the planter box frame attached to the legs at the top, what we need to do is decide how deep we want the planter box to be. So if I have 10 inches from here, I need to subtract 3 and a half so I need to mark 6 and a half up from this post. So basically I’ve used a couple of pieces of scrap that I had leftover, pulled them out of the bin, I’ve cut them 6 and a half inches and now I”m going to use them to brace. I’m just going to take the frame and I’m just going to drop it over the legs, slide it down so it lands on this piece and this piece in the corner. Then I’ll tag it in place. So with the brace in place on this corner I know I can fasten this one in place. Then I’ll move it over here, double check the height and continue to screw in all four legs. So if you find that the leg is wandering, sometimes these 4 by 4’s have a little twist a little cup, try using a clamp. I put a clamp in place, pull it securely into the one side, then I brace it from the other side. Now that it’s secured with clamps I can screw it together. So with the two screws in place, now I can release the clamps and just repeat on all four legs. Adding a shelf is really key to making this multi-functional. So with the garden box inverted, I’ve measured from the center of the legs here to the center of the legs here and it works out perfect. I get this 60 inch piece and I can split it in half and make two 30 inch rails. Using the same braces as before, I figure it’s a good height, I now can mark the heights on each leg right using these as stilts. What you’ll notice is that I’ve reset this back a bit. What I’m going to do is put a face plate on it to go in-between, so then it will lie almost flush with this leg. I’m going to take the measurement from here , 10 & 7 eights and transfer it to the bottom to spread the legs apart and screw it in as a faceplate. So now I”m going to make the bottom shelf I’m going to use 5 quarter by 6 deckboards to go all the way across on the short distance and then I’ll run a faceboard across the other side. just to make sure that you don’t see those cut edges. So what I like to do is mark the middle and work our way out. So 10 and 7 eights is our number and I’m just going to cut multiple pieces offsetting from that center line. So with the pattern laid out, I can see that I need to rip two of them at 4 and 3 quarters, so with all the boards laid out in place I’m now going to use my 1 and a half inch screws to put them down. So with all those exposed ends I’m now going to cap it with a nice face board, 26 inches so I’m going to use 2 by 2’s to line the inside, now they’ll act as rails where I can lay the boards down that will be the base of my actual planter box, so when I put them in place I want them to sit so that the bottoms are flush with the 2 by 4 ‘s and because they are small lumber I’m going to pre-drill them I’ll pre-set 3 inch screws into each hole this way it’s easier when I go to put them in place. So with those rails in place now all I need is one end rail on the short ends. 10 and 7 eights is the number on this one I’m going to use my two off cuts that I have left over from the 2 by 2 to make that last rail. Remember to go flush with the bottom of the 2 by 4 again now all we have to do is line the box. We’ll use deckboards on the bottom and fence boards on the inside walls. So I’ve taken the measurement inside the box less and eighth of an inch.
I’ve got 17 and 7 eights. I need six pieces to line the bottom of this box. So for the last two boards we have to do a funny cut. because the way we’ve made the legs we have to do a little corner cut out of them. I have a 1 and a half inch strip and then less the thickness of the board so that’s a 3 and a half inch leg and we’ll be on our way. I’m using 2 inch deck screws to secure all the bottom. Our next steps going to be putting the liner on in the inside. FOr the fence boards I’m going to run them at 11 and 1 eighth. I want to create a symmetrical pattern on the side of the garden box doing that that means the middle board needs to be in the middle. by marking center on the board I transfer that center to the side of the rail with it marked I can now see how my pattern will lay with all the boards and Iknow that at the end the last board has a small overlap by holding it against the side of the leg and the side of this board I can go to the otherside and mark up the face of it and that will give me a score for where I need to go over to the table saw and rip it. I’ll take four boards over to the saw, cut them at 4 and 3 quarters and I’ll have a perfect symmeterical pattern. Now I’ve rip my pieces, it’s just a matter of stapling them in place, the box is almost complete. all I want to do now is add a picture frame to the top of it. I’m going to use the deckboards to cap it off, 45 degree corners will make it look really nice. with all the pieces cut I’m now just going to dry fit and assemble the top cap. Something I like to do for extra security is I pre-drill the ends on the side grain this way I actually get the tops flush. Well, no more excuses if you’re running out of space in your backyard you can build a raised planter box like I did here today. After a week you should notice that your wood is dry. Be sure to add a water proofer this way you can maintain that beautiful natural brown tone.