How To Build A Planter Box – Repurpose Wood Scraps Into Beautiful and Usable Containers

~ by guest blogger Rene Rodriguez

I’m one of the “Sustainable Techs” here at Sustainable Technologies and our company does environmental construction and commercial renewable energy installations in Northern California. We are headquartered at the former naval base at Alameda Point.

Over the years we have collected scraps of wood that we use to build forms for concrete pads.  We reuse and repurpose our wood as much as possible on our projects. Because it has concrete on it, is not good for the compost bin, so that is why we tried to come up with other creative uses for it.

One day we decided to take our wood pile and get creative, so one of the Sustainable Techs created beautiful planters for our olive trees.

our wood stock that we pull from.

The used wood stock we pull from.


Finished planter box.








At first the olive trees looked like Charlie Brown Christmas Trees but giving them a new home allowed them to thrive and grow into a jungle.


Before: Charlie Brown Xmas | After: Thriving Jungle

The olive trees attract birds, including doves. Though we cannot dig into the ground here at the point because of the environmental cleanup that is still going on, creating the container garden has helped us to revitalize our local area and support the wildlife.

The plans to build it are attached (SustainableGreenhouse_Planters).  It is a one page layout with measurements. I’m assuming that readers will be familiar with power tools.

Here are more photos of our greenhouse, which is a great place for our employees to take a break and have their own space to grow things. It is fed by a greywater system from our break room.

rene_cropped_2Rene Rodriguez is an office administrator at Sustainable Technologies, a  minority-owned small business in Alameda that provides environmental services in Northern California. She assists in implementing the company’s sustainability policy and green initiatives in all aspects of the business. She commutes to work by bike daily from San Francisco and is a proud member of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.

Interested in being a Guest Blogger? Submission details can be found at: