Wheelbarrow Planter Ideas (25 Garden & Yard Pictures)

Want to discover beautiful wheelbarrow planter ideas for your own backyard garden? Aside from the usual flowers, plants and shrubs, some gardens have quirky items mixed with the usual landscaping items. Some add unique pots, small water fountains, and statues, and some even include old items found in your garage or backyard, such as old wheels, old gardening tools, etc.

Beautiful wheelbarrow planter with flowers

One of the most common of these old backyard items would be the wheelbarrow, which can be converted and re-purposed into a unique plant box. (Attribution #1)

The all-wood wheelbarrow pictured above features a raw wood finish which gives it a very natural and rustic appeal, allowing it to blend in nicely with the variety of plants and flowers placed in and around it. [toc]

Using a Wheelbarrow As a Garden Planter

Antique wheelbarrow with flowering plants

A wheelbarrow is a functional tool that can be used to transport various items on short distances. It usually has one wheel at the front is designed to be propelled by one person using the handles at the opposite end of its singular wheel.

Modern wheelbarrows are usually made from metal & a rubber tire or plastic, but older carts are usually all-wood. Some designs also combines different materials, but they are generally operated in the same way and are around the same size.

Despite its very functional use, there comes a time when wheelbarrows can deteriorate and loose their primary function to haul items. Just like any tool, eventually, your pushcart can get rusty, and deformed or its wheels will break. Instead of disposing of it, however, there are various things you can do with your old wheelbarrow to transform and re-purpose it. 

Using an old wheelbarrow as a garden planter can give it new life and add a unique focal point in your garden. It doesn’t matter how dilapidated your old cart is as that can simply add to its charm. With a few simple steps and tools, your old garden tool can be given a new life & become the star of your backyard.

Those who have kept their old wheelbarrows would definitely get excited with this idea, but those who don’t can easily source them from junkyards, thrift shops or flea markets for a very low price. Rust and deformity should not discourage you to repurpose and recycle old wheelbarrows as such details simply add to its charm and rustic appeal.

Below are some excellent examples of garden carts that were transformed into planters. You will see a variety of wheelbarrow planter ideas, including a variety of styles, materials and area of application which might inspire you when creating your own.

Wooden Wheelbarrow Planter

Wood pallet wheelbarrow planter for garden

This birch wheelbarrow was re-purposed into a gorgeous flower box. Since the mechanism is still functional, you can easily transfer its location in your garden as well. You  can also find other repurposing ideas here, such as the old rain boots used as a flower pot.

Antique wheelbarrow parked with flowers

This example uses an old metal pushcart in black as a small plant pot for a combination of flowers and shrubs. To give it an “aged’ look, some plants and weeds were planted underneath and around the item to make it look like it has been there for a long time. (Attribution #2)

Small and large wood framed wheelbarrow

These are miniature wheelbarrows that were used as decorative plant containers for flowering plants. The old framing of the metal wheels was kept, while the rubber tires were removed for a more rustic look.

Backyard pond with wheelbarrow as a decorative arrangement

A discrete green-painted wooden wheelbarrow was placed on the side of this pond to serve as a plant pot holder. Inside the wooden cart are tin plant pots for a very shabby chic look.

Rustic wood plank wheelbarrow flower decoration

This small wood push cart is compact, making it easily transportable. Because of its small size you can fit it in any corner of your garden, or even place it by the entrance of your house.

Decorative wheelbarrow with bird design

This example shows a unique way to dress-up common metal wheelbarrows. It uses weaved recycled plastic and other recycled items to make it look like a peacock, making it not only a functional flower planter but also an installation art. (Attribution #3)

Metal wheelbarrow for herbs and plants

Sometimes, simple is best, and this example shows that you don’t need to do anything fancy to make your wheelbarrow container look good. Just a plain old cart, a nice herbs and plants arrangement with a nice red color scheme, and you’re done. (Attribution #8)

Wheelbarrow cart for garden decoration

This old, dilapidated garden cart has no side and back boards, so it was simply used as a stand to display the flower basket.

Purple decorative wheelbarrow for store display

This is a great idea for storefront displays using old wooden wheelbarrows. To match the lavender concept of the lavender flower display, the carrier was also painted in a lilac color, but keeping the finishing looking rough to maintain its shabby chic appeal.

Old wood diy wheelbarrow changed to planter

Another example of a salvaged wood wheelbarrow used as a flowerpot stand. This wood pushcart is used to promote a neighborhood antique store. (Attribution #4)

Old Wheelbarrow Garden Planter

Rusty wheelbarrow with flowers and rustic wagon wheel

The rustiness of this metal wheelbarrow simply adds to its charm, especially as an all wooden wheel was added to the composition. It gives a very antique, old-world feel to the decorative herb garden.

Transform an old wheelbarrow in to a flower planter

You do not have to do anything fancy to your old wheelbarrow, just like this example which keeps its old rusty surface, making the colorful flowers really stand out. (Attribution #5)

Wheelbarrow trolley with pink flowers

This is a very old wood & metal combination wheelbarrow that was planted with peonies, adding a charming look to the old landscaping trolley. (Attribution #6)

Wooden wheelbarrow turned in to a planter

This example shows how a metal tray was inserted into the uneven surface of the wood wheelbarrow to create an even surface for the plant pots or boxes to stand on. (Attribution #7)

Wheelbarrow cart with flower pot

This is a very old style wheelbarrow that doesn’t have a “basin,” so it was simply used as a stand for the large flower pot, adding more emphasis to the area.

Small Wheelbarrow Flower Box

Metal wagon flower planter

This is a very small metal wheelbarrow which did not really function as a load carrier, but more as a decorative sculpture in the garden.

Decorative flower garden with small wood wheelbarrow

This wooden wheelbarrow was designed to be used as a decorative item as it has curves and accents that are unnecessary for a landscaping cart but add more charm as a decorative item. This example uses it as a succulent planter.

Wooden crafted wheelbarrow potted for flowers in front yard

A small decorative four-wheeled wheelbarrow made of salvaged old wood and used as a plant pot holder. It was placed in a nice spot by the porch, making it a nice installation art feature in the front yard.

Ornamental Wheelbarrow Flower Box

Wood wagon full of flowers

This example shows a wooden four-wheeled cart. Because of its bigger size, it is able to hold more weight, therefore allowing more “levels”and plant varieties placed inside.

Metal and cedar wood wheelbarrow for decor use

This is a brand-new wheelbarrow design specifically for holding plant pots as you can see its mesh base design and its sturdy metal wheels and legs. It has a very clean & modern industrial look which would look great both indoors and outdoors.

Get more information about this novelty garden planter cart at – Amazon

Rustic Wheelbarrow Planting Box

Old wheelbarrow with pink flowers

Functioning as a focal point of the garden, this wooden wheelbarrow has a rustic charm that matches the flowers’ light colors as it uses light-colored wood.

Red wheelbarrow flower cart

To match the bold red color of the flowers, the small wood wheelbarrow was also painted in red, making it really pop out from its background.

Red old fashioned flower cart

With no side supports, this red and black cart simply functions as a stand for the plant pot, giving it more height and emphasis.

Old fashioned wheelbarrow container

Using salvaged wood materials and metal, this small wheelbarrow planter with metal plant-holder was made. It was painted in red and placed in a conspicuous location to make it stand-out.

How to Make a Wheelbarrow Style Planter for Your Garden

For those interested in creating their own wheelbarrow planter in their garden, here are some upcycle tips with easy steps you can follow to make yours:

Gather appropriate tools for the project – you would need the following items: Power Drill, 3/4″ drill bit (or larger if you prefer), wire mesh, potting mix or garden soil, scissors, plant seeds/seedlings/plants, mulch (depending on the type of plant you are using)

Source your wheelbarrow – a defunct pushcart from your garage, or those bought or salvaged from junkyards can be used for this purpose. Determine the look you want to achieve to help you decide the type of wheelbarrow to use. Wood wheelbarrows often have an open back portion (near the handles) so you have to board it up first to be able to use it.

Create drainage holes – flip over your cart and create holes for water drainage. A 3/4″ hole is an ideal size and would allow excess water to drip out to keep your plants alive.

Add wire mesh – a fine wire mesh should be attached to the bottom of the barrow to cover the holes made for drainage to keep the soil from spilling out of the drainage holes. Make sure the size of the wire mesh still allows water to pass through, but is fine enough to keep your soil in place.

Select a location – before filling your cart, it is better to decide where to put it and place it there as it would be difficult to haul it once it is filled. Find the perfect spot in your garden, front yard or backyard and compose it according to the look you want to achieve with your wheelbarrow planter.

Fill it with soil or potting mix – depending on your preference and the type of plants you intend to add to your wheelbarrow, you can fill it until around 1″ from the top with your soil mixture or potting mix of choice. Always keep in mind to consider the type of plant you will be planting to determine the perfect mixture and keep your plants healthy.

Aside from filling it with soil, an alternative method would be placing existing plant pots inside the wheelbarrow. This method is less messy and definitely faster. This is also ideal if you have existing potted plants you want to use

Start Planting – you can start planting your flowers, vegetables or even succulents on your wheelbarrow planter, making sure to use the appropriate planting technique needed. There are so many plant varieties you can choose from depending on your preference.

Add mulch – add the appropriate layer of mulch according to the plant you have placed in your planter to keep the moisture in.

Aside from this, you can also paint your wheelbarrow prior to filling it with soil if you want to achieve a specific look or adhere to a specific color scheme. You can also add other decorative materials on the surface of the cart.

The possibilities are endless and your only boundary is your imagination. Whether you’re adding a rustic charm to your garden or a more modern touch, both can be achieved by giving new life to an old wheelbarrow.

Make a Rustic Wheelbarrow DIY Project

[expand title=”Show Image Sources” swaptitle=”Hide Image Sources”]

Attribution #1 – beautiful-planter-with-flowers
nationgardenclubs from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #2 – antique-planter
mikecogh from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #3 – decorative-planter-with-bird-design
graeme from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #4 – old-wood-planter
sangre-la from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #5 – tranform-an-old-in-to-a-flower-planter
nationgardenclubs from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #6 – planter-with-pink-flowers
niftyniall from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #7 – wooden cart turned in to planter
muffintoptn from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #8 – metal trolley for garden planter
mikecogh from Flickr (Creative Commons License)

Attribution #9 – garden-filled-with-flowers
nationgardenclubs from Flickr (Creative Commons License)[/expand]

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