Containers forum: Liners in cedar planters?

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Name: Greg
Lake Forest Park, Washington (Zone 8b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Brinybay
Jul 29, 2017 1:57 PM CST
I just bought some cedar planters from someone who makes them at home (great quality, saved money.) I noticed he didn't put drain holes in the bottom. Not a problem, even I can drill a few holes.

I googled around for the recommended size (many different answers, but I don't think it's terribly critical) and they also talk about lining cedar planters with plastic or some other material with openings for drain holes. I've never done this with my other cedar containers, is it really that critical? What botanical purpose does a liner have?

They also mention putting gravel in the bottom. Again, why? I've read gravel or loose rocks in the bottom of containers actually inhibited drainage, so I've never done that. The plants in the other containers seem to be fine without liners or gravel. Maybe I answered my own question.
[Last edited by Brinybay - Jul 29, 2017 2:01 PM (+)]
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Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
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crawgarden
Jul 29, 2017 2:54 PM CST
Not sure its necessary or critical, I have 4 large composters made out of cedar, I repurposed them after being a deck for 20+ years, another 10 years as composters and they are still good. I wouldn't use any linings, but would put some holes in the bottom for drainage.
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Name: Greg
Lake Forest Park, Washington (Zone 8b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Brinybay
Jul 29, 2017 3:02 PM CST
crawgarden said:Not sure its necessary or critical, I have 4 large composters made out of cedar, I repurposed them after being a deck for 20+ years, another 10 years as composters and they are still good. I wouldn't use any linings, but would put some holes in the bottom for drainage.


Good enough for me. I really don't have time to go to all that fuss and added expense anyway unless it makes a big difference in the plants themselves, which I don't think it does.
Name: Paula
NYC suburbs (Zone 6b)
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Turbosaurus
Dec 7, 2017 4:16 PM CST
Putting in a liner will change how fast the cedar silvers, it will slow it down.

I wouldn't bother unless you intend to oil them annually to keep the cedar color.
Name: Greg
Lake Forest Park, Washington (Zone 8b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Brinybay
Dec 9, 2017 6:18 PM CST
Turbosaurus said:Putting in a liner will change how fast the cedar silvers, it will slow it down.

I wouldn't bother unless you intend to oil them annually to keep the cedar color.


I'm not going to bother with it. They're for growing, not showing.

Name: Paula
NYC suburbs (Zone 6b)
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Turbosaurus
Dec 18, 2017 12:09 AM CST
just a last minute tip- shim it. Put something, anthing to keep the cedar off the ground-

if you let it- cedar will last forever- but it has to be exposed to air for that to happen. If it sits in a puddle or level with the ground when water surface tension can keep it wet ALL THE TIME even cedar will rot- you can put anything under it to give it a little lift. I tend to keep soda bottle caps for this job specifically- but just getting it 1/4" off the ground will extend the life of your planters from 5 years to 35 years...
Name: Joanna
North Central Massachusetts (N (Zone 5b)
Life & gardens: make them beautiful
Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Vermiculture
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joannakat
Dec 18, 2017 10:38 AM CST
Turbosaurus said:just a last minute tip- shim it. Put something, anthing to keep the cedar off the ground-

if you let it- cedar will last forever- but it has to be exposed to air for that to happen. If it sits in a puddle or level with the ground when water surface tension can keep it wet ALL THE TIME even cedar will rot- you can put anything under it to give it a little lift. I tend to keep soda bottle caps for this job specifically- but just getting it 1/4" off the ground will extend the life of your planters from 5 years to 35 years...


That's a great idea Paula! You should post it in the Ideas Forum! Hope you will.
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AKA Joey.
Name: Greg
Lake Forest Park, Washington (Zone 8b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Brinybay
Dec 25, 2017 8:12 PM CST
Turbosaurus said:just a last minute tip- shim it. Put something, anthing to keep the cedar off the ground-

if you let it- cedar will last forever- but it has to be exposed to air for that to happen. If it sits in a puddle or level with the ground when water surface tension can keep it wet ALL THE TIME even cedar will rot- you can put anything under it to give it a little lift. I tend to keep soda bottle caps for this job specifically- but just getting it 1/4" off the ground will extend the life of your planters from 5 years to 35 years...


The cedar plants didn't have feet either, but I have a number of cement blocks I used to elevate them a few inches off the ground.

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