I recently built a new window planter for my wife for her birthday. It replaced the old one that I built for a birthday present about 15 years ago. I had to tear it down a while back to have the patio replaced. It had survived the North Florida elements for about 15 years and was due for replacement.
For the base on the replacement I used standard 5 step treated 2x10 stair stringers that I purchased at a local home improvement store. To make the project take less patio space I turned them upside down. The plant shelves are made from that recycled plasticy simulated wood material that is supposed to never rot. It comes in 3/4 x 11 inch dimensions in 8 foot lengths. It is remarkably easy to cut and work with using standard woodworking tools. Since the pots are in direct contact with it and hold water under their bases, I thought it would resist rotting way better than standard treated lumber. I used stainless steel trim head screws to secure the shelves to the wooden stringers. To make it stay put and support the stringers, I used two of the typical framing lumber hangers found in deck and floor construction. All in all, I would say that it was one of the most enjoyable projects that I have done in years. My total cost was about $175 without the plants (my wife already had those). Below are some pictures and captions. I would be happy to answer questions to the best of my ability.
Flipping the stair stringers takes considerably less horizontal space on the patio. I put a good coat of water seal on these to protect them since they are exposed to lots of waterings. I paid special attention to coating the cut ends and end grain.
|I notched the shelves and added a guard rail to the back and a rim to the front and sides.|
|I cut holes in the top shelf and we bought matching pots.|
|View from inside the kitchen. The lower pots make the view better.|
|Notched the shelves on all but the lowest. Note the guard rail in back. The corners are cut to allow water to run off.|
|Side view. The location gets a few hours of full sun and lots of indirect light.|
Take care and work safely,