How to Build a Butterfly Multi-Planter

Difficulty: Easy  |  Estimated time: 1.5 hours  |  Help needed: 2 volunteers

Beauty will always enhance a playspace, because it draws people into a common area – and into an opportunity to socialize with fellow community members. The butterfly garden also provides a unique opportunity for children to tend to a plant that attracts colorful and beautiful butterflies!

Download Instructions

Materials and tools

Quantity: Materials:
16 4x4x12' boards
10lbs 60d 6" galvanized nails
4 Corner braces
1lb 1 ½" N8 nails
Adjust as needed Mulch, fill material, potting soil
Adjust as needed Plants/flowers
Tools needed:
Miter saw
Pencil
Tape measure
Carpenter's square
Safety glasses
Drill
¼" Drill bit
Hammer or mini sledge

Preparation instructions

  1. Sort all materials into piles by like item to ensure you have materials needed to complete project.

  2. Take [7] of the 4x4x12' boards. Cut each into [3] 48" pieces, for a total of [21] 4x4x48" pieces.

  3. Take [4] of the remaining 4x4x12' boards. Cut each into [3] 41" pieces, for a total of [12] 4x4x41" pieces.

  4. Take [1] of the remaining 4x4x12' boards. Cut into [2] 4x4x41" pieces, for a total of [14] 4x4x41" pieces, and [1] 4x4x48" pieces, for a total of [22] 4x4x48" pieces.

  5. Do NOT cut the remaining [4] 4x4x12' boards.


Build instructions

  1. Before building, inventory and sort all of your materials.

    Quantity: Inventory:
    4 4x4x12' boards
    22 4x4x48" pieces
    14 4x4x41" pieces
  2. Nail together the four corners of the planter base using the [4] 4x4x12' boards and 6" nails. One person should hold the 4x4 pieces in place to make sure they are properly squared while another person hammers in the nail on each of the four corners. You may want to pre-drill these holes with the ¼" drill bit to make hammering easier.

  3. Lay out the first level of the planter. As shown, the purple pieces are the 4x4x48" and the orange pieces are 4x4x41". Use the ¼" drill bit to pre drill holes and then attach at the corners with the 6" galvanized nails.

  4. Lay out the second level of the planter. The purple pieces are the 4x4x41" and the orange pieces are 4x4x48". Use the ¼" drill bit to pre drill holes and then attach at the corners with the 6" galvanized nails. You can also now nail from the top down into the 4x4 piece on the first level.

  5. Lay out the third level of the planter in the center box. The purple pieces are the 4x4x41" and the orange pieces are 4x4x48". Use the ¼" drill bit to pre-drill holes and then attach at the corners and from the top down with the 6" galvanized nails as you did in Step 3.

  6. Fill the outside of the 5 small planter boxes with mulch.
    In each of the 5 planter boxes, fill the first ¾ of the box with fill material, then top off with potting soil and plants.