Freshen up your porch for fall with this DIY pumpkin planter

Nov 11, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. ET

It's pumpkin time! Pumpkin lattes, scones, jack-o'-lanterns and planters. Planters? Yep, turn a regular ol' pumpkin into a festive autumn planter.

Pumpkins make great planters. They are big enough to hold a good amount of soil and plants. They add great visual interest to your autumn vignettes and they are inexpensive. Pair your pumpkin planter with seasonal flowers and your fall outdoor decor is complete.

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What you'll need:

  1. Large, round pumpkin — Get one that is big enough for the space you plan to put it and large enough to hold the plant.
  2. Seasonal plants — Mums, ornamental cabbage and kale, pansies, thyme or ivy, I used mums, ajuga and vinca vine.
  3. Serrated knife
  4. Ice cream scoop
  5. Potting soil

Prepare the pumpkin

Cut a generous top opening. It will need to be big enough to fit all the plants you selected to go in your planter.

DIY Pumpkin planter

Hollow out the pumpkin using the ice cream scoop.

DIY Pumpkin planter: scoop out center

You might need to saw out extra pumpkin flesh to make the hole bigger.

DIY Pumpkin planter: Make hole bigger

Once all the flesh and seeds are out, flip the pumpkin over and cut a drainage hole.

DIY Pumpkin planter: add drainage holes

Turn the pumpkin right side up and place a rock or two inside the drainage hole. This is so the water can flow out but not too much soil.

DIY Pumpkin planter: Add rocks

Fill the pumpkin with potting soil.

DIY Pumpkin planter: Fill with soil

Arrange the plants. Plant combinations look good in odd numbers. You can place tall plants toward the "back" of the planter and then fill in with smaller plants toward the front. Add the trailing plants toward the edge of the planter. Another option is to place the tallest plant in the middle of the planter, then fill in around with the smaller plants. Keep the trailing plants near the edge.

Once you have arranged the plants to your liking, go ahead and plant them. Water thoroughly.

Arrange other plants around your pumpkin planter for added interest. Some other decorative options can include heirloom variety gourds and smaller pumpkins, dried corn stalks or elevating the planter on a birdbath or plant stand.

DIY Pumpkin planter: Finished

Your pumpkin planter should last a few weeks. After the season is over, the plants can be removed and planted in other areas in your landscape. Toss the pumpkin planter in your compost pile.

More pumpkin facts and ideas

Fun pumpkin varieties
Growing pumpkins
Pie pumpkins vs. carving pumpkins

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