log planter

  • Advertise with us

« back to Woodworking Skill Share forum

Forum topic by Danpaddles posted 11-13-2012 04:32 AM 4082 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Danpaddles's profile


573 posts in 2340 days

11-13-2012 04:32 AM

A good friend asked me if I could help her make a log planter, from an oak tree that came from her childhood home. I have no great ideas about how to hollow out an oak log. Not even sure if it is white oak or red, I would imagine white oak would last a whole lot longer than red oak.

Ideas? What about finding someone with a Woodmizer, slab off the sides, bandsaw out a big depression, then re-attach the slabbed sides. I am not sure I am good enough with a chain saw to try to use one to hollow out the insides. Kick back danger, right?

I am also used to working alone, I would guess I can not turn and maneuver a log by myself.

This is the sort of thing she is looking for, in a similarly sized log.

-- Dan V. in Indy

6 replies so far

View MisterBill's profile


411 posts in 2280 days

#1 posted 11-13-2012 12:00 PM

On one of the survival television shows they were making a dug out canoe and they used small controlled fires to hollow out the log. Just a thought!

View Swyftfeet's profile


170 posts in 2199 days

#2 posted 11-13-2012 04:17 PM

An adz! Good workwout

-- Brian

View Danpaddles's profile


573 posts in 2340 days

#3 posted 11-14-2012 12:43 PM

I like the fire idea a lot more than using an adz. I do own a gutter adz, but….. not sure I have the arms for that approach.

-- Dan V. in Indy

View bondogaposis's profile


4770 posts in 2379 days

#4 posted 11-14-2012 01:21 PM

I think I would bore holes in it and adze out the waste. A small electric chainsaw could do wonders w/o being as heavy and unwieldy as a gas saw. Then there are those King Arthur tools that you could look into. These are just random suggestions, I have no experience hollowing logs. You might point out to her that if she fills it w/ dirt and waters it, it will rot away eventually.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View SBRPearce's profile


7 posts in 2216 days

#5 posted 11-14-2012 04:45 PM

I’d second the suggestion to use a big auger bit to bore holes, then adze out the waste. A “slick” chisel to clean up the sides and you’re good to go.

The inevitable rot can be delayed for quite some time if you drill a few well-placed drainage holes in the bottom, line the cavity with heavy plastic sheeting (with holes punched through to the drainage holes) and then add a couple inches of gravel in the bottom as well. The plastic can be stapled to the sides of the planting cavity just a little below the surface.

A pal made a similar planter out of the chest-high stump of a large cedar his father cut down. He used an angle grinder to excavate the hole (WAAAAY more work than it should have been!) and the planter lasted for about 8 years before it got punky and they took out the stump entirely.

-- "Work consists of whatever a body is obliged to do. Play consists of whatever a body is not obliged to do." -Mark Twain

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 2204 days

#6 posted 11-14-2012 07:18 PM

It looks great and carefully thought of project. Well done!


Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics