Planter for balcony

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Project by LeChêne posted 04-10-2013 06:08 AM 2124 views 10 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I build this planter for the roof terrasse of our appartment. It was a temporary home, so i didn’t apply finish and used standard galvanised screws. The wood I used is impregnated pine of low quality. The planter consists of three parts, the middle being a small bench with a storage space under the seat. The elements on the sides of the bench have both three stories and the top two are not too deep. My girlfriend planted a lot of things in there and it looked very nice. However the winter and autom wind at the coast area in Holland was quite strong on our balcony due to the orientation of it. So the tree never looked as nice anymore after we first year planned it and also the other plants needed to be replaced every year. Never the less, we enjoyed it. I left it behind when we moved to our new house. No way i was going to remove all the soil!

5 comments so far

View hoss12992's profile


3814 posts in 1316 days

#1 posted 04-10-2013 07:00 AM

Great job

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View Ken90712's profile


16864 posts in 2612 days

#2 posted 04-10-2013 08:09 AM

Nice job, cool design…. Looking good… Bummer you had to leave it but gives you an excuse to make another one.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

21579 posts in 1761 days

#3 posted 04-10-2013 08:30 AM

Good job.

Welcome to LumberJocks

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View PaulHWood's profile


330 posts in 1675 days

#4 posted 04-10-2013 12:16 PM

Nice looking planter

Just a caution for designs of this nature:

Roof design is based on a minimum live load of 20 psf load (flat roof) and if in a snow area, a snow load which can exceed this. Any additional dead load should not infringe on these live loads. Additionally obstructions can cause drifting snow which can make the localized loading worse.

Rooftop , deck, and balcony planters can exceed this live load quite easily so make sure you investigate the structure before adding planters. They do make lightweight growing medium for such cases.

Typically a deck is designed for the occupancy it serves so in a residential setting, you are usually looking at 40psf. Balconies are designed for 100psf (60 psf for 1 & 2 family residences).

Check your local codes.

-- -Paul, South Carolina Structural Engineer by trade, Crappy Woodworker by choice

View LeChêne's profile


2 posts in 1296 days

#5 posted 04-10-2013 03:35 PM


I was indeed a bit worried when I calculated the total weight of the planter, including (wet) soil. Indeed quit a weight. I tried to minimise the depth of the compartements at each level and also spread the load on the tiles by added additional legs.
I have no clue what structure they used for the roof, since it was not visible due to a lowered ceiling. I was a bit worried in the beginning, but it stayed on the terras for three years without a problem. No clue if it is still there.

I am planning to build another set of planters for on top of the flat roof of the extension at the back of our new house. I keep your advise in mind when designing them, thanks.

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