How To Make A Pallet Herb Garden

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My husband is a chef and loves cooking, so we always have some fresh herbs on our kitchen windowsill. The downside is that they die pretty quickly.

So I came up with this idea of a herb garden I could put outdoors, and after some research online, I’ve picked the one I really liked. But…

Days went by, and I struggled to find time to do it. But after a couple of weeks, I finally managed to take a pallet out of my garage and started disassembling it. It was a nice, sunny day until it started raining…


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Enough said, I have finally managed to finish my pallet herb garden project, and after several obstacles( like running out of staples, buying ones I couldn’t use, and breaking a drill), it’s ready, and I’m very pleased. So here it is, Pallet Garden Ideas Part 1 – How to Make A Herb Garden tutorial.

Tools and Materials

  • a heavyweight Euro Pallet
  • a hammer and a crowbar for dismantling
  • a finishing sander-(check this post for the best finishing sander recommendations) /random orbit sander and sanding paper P-60
  • two tins of high gloss white exterior, non-drip paint for wood
  • paintbrushes
  • white spirit for cleaning
  • an electric drill and drill bits for wood
  • 50mm (2in) nails and single thread yellow zinc passivated screws 5 x 40mm    (1/5 x 1 1/2 in)
  • a weed control fabric or coconut planter liners
  • a stapler with lots of staples
  • a pair of scissors
  • a measuring tape
  • some dust masks and safety goggles
  • a handsaw, circular saw, or a jigsaw
  • some wooden blocks (they might not be necessary it depends on what type of pallet you are using)
  • spare planks I’d have left from my previous project
  • some gardening soil for planting and growing fresh herbs

Dismantling A Pallet

First of all, I needed to remove the bottom planks and get rid of these blocks made of wood shavings. I planned to change them to wooden blocks because they look better and would have been better/easier to paint.

So after doing so, I was left with a base for my herb garden with the nails sticking out. I was going to reuse them to attach the new wooden blocks, so I left them in for that moment.

However, I got rid of the ones from the middle plank (red arrow). I used new, shorter nails instead of the old ones, so the plank was still attached.

From the planks I’d removed, I only left the wider one that I was going to use. So the final result was:


I had a main base left from a euro pallet. I had two same-width planks left from my first project and one plank from this dismantled pallet.

Changing The Wooden Blocks, Cutting Planks To Size, And Sanding

My husband volunteered to cut the blocks and planks for me 🙂 And showed me how to properly hammer nails and not bend them in the process. This sped up things a bit, but fear not. The project was not nearly finished at the end of that day.

The next step was to remove the old nails. I chose the most straight ones and gave them a few strokes with sandpaper to remove rust. Then with help from my other half, I nailed the new wooden blocks in place.

It’d be much easier and faster if I had a nail gun, though. The best nail gun for DIY is the one that is the easiest to use and speeds up the whole assembling process.

With that done, I could move on to sanding. I was only going to sand it once on each side with P-60 grit sandpaper to remove dirt and smooth it out a bit. More sanding wasn’t really necessary as I was going to paint it in the end.

Check out my posts on sanding pallets/wood and staining pallets/wood.


I’d chosen a white paint color mainly because I thought the green of the herbs would look very nice against it. And indeed, it looks very nice 🙂

I had not given much thought to the paint itself. As long as it was wood paint for outdoors, it was fine.

The first layer of paint was drunk by the wood, as was the second one. Using a white primer would solve this issue, but I didn’t have anything at hand.

I tried to cover every single hole and crack to make sure water won’t get inside. Next time, I’ll just get the wood filler. Well, you always learn something new, aren’t you?

As you can imagine, I only got one paint tin, and as it wasn’t enough, I needed to get another one, but, unfortunately, they ran out in the store I got it from. So a trip to town was in order to get some more paint.

Luckily enough, the second tin of paint was much nicer, thicker, and super white. Two more coats later and my project started to look how I wanted it to 🙂

The thing is, painting it takes time. Every coat of paint has to dry for at least 24 hours before applying the next one. So the painting itself took me several days in total to achieve desired results.

How to keep dirt inside the pallet planters

There are several ways to do it.

The first one is to use some kind of weed-control fabric, as I did. This is the most flexible solution, as you can measure and cut it to the desired size.

The second way would be to buy plastic plant containers, but you have to make sure they will fit, and you’d need to support them from underneath.

The last solution is to use coconut planter liners. It’s a natural and eco-friendly one. It’s also cheap, and you would be able to cut the liners to fit your project as well.


So the time for assembling my herb garden finally came:) I put the pallet on the grass and measured to know how much of the weed fabric I’ll need to form some sort of pocket.

The way I chose to do it doesn’t include any wood bottom for each shelf holding soil and herbs, so it’s less drilling and screwing.

I thought I’d give it a go first, and if that solution didn’t work, then I probably will make wooden bottoms.

You ask, why bother with a fabric in the first place and not just use only the planks? The reason is that I didn’t want the wood to have direct contact with wet soil, even if it’s painted.

The second reason is exactly that. I didn’t want the painted wood to be in direct contact with soil which I’m going to put eating herbs in.

You never know if some of the paint won’t get into the soil. I’m not sure if it’s going to work 100%, but this way, the chances are smaller that it will.

I decided to double up the fabric layer because it seemed a bit thin to me. It really depends on what fabric you’re going to use.

The size I cut out was 90 x 90cm (35.4 x 35.4 in). The pallet was 80cm(31.5 in) wide, and I added extra just in case. Then I folded the fabric in half, so I had 90 (35.4 in) x 45cm (17.7 in).

I started at the bottom plank. I took the longer side of the folded fabric and stapled it to the top of the plank.

Then I smoothed it out, as you can see in the picture. Underneath it, I put one of the short planks “face down”(the side you wanted to be outside/visible went on the ground).

I stapled the fabric along the edges of both planks. You can staple it whenever you like just to secure it in place.

Pallet Garden Ideas

The next step was to pick up the plank and put it on top of the wooden blocks so the fabric would go inside the “pocket.” Just make sure you are happy with how the fabric is placed/stapled.

Now the drilling. You can use nails and hammer them, but I didn’t want to take any chances that my blocks would split. So size four wood drill did the trick. However, I manage to break it 🙂

I drilled two holes in each block and put two screws in. All that holds the plank nicely in place. You just have to repeat the whole process with the other two planks.


Final result

And that’s it! Now the herb garden is ready for some soil and herbs.

Edit: And if you’re interested, I made another one of those recently. Check out the post I wrote about it.

herb garden made out of a pallet

I hope you liked my step-by-step tutorial. If something is not clear, feel free to leave a comment or drop me a line via the contact page 🙂 And don’t forget to pin it to your pallet projects board!

If you're looking to make your own vertical pallet herb garden then this step by step tutorial is perfect for those who are unsure how to start. With our materials list and detailed instructions on where exactly each piece should go, this DIY Pallet garden project will be easy as pie! Build it, plant it and enjoy fresh herbs every day even without having a big garden.

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  1. Wow this is very interesting and something I have never heard of. I love what you have done with your projects and your website is totally awesome! How long does it take you to complete a pallet project?

    This is a very unique website/project and I haven’t seen anybody do this. Is this your only webpage?

    1. Hi Christopher,
      Thanks for a nice comment 🙂 As for my projects it really depends on many things like available resources i.e pallets, weather (as I live in England I have to squeeze them between rainy days due to not enough space in the garage at the moment lol), spare time and difficulty of the project itself. The last one – Pallet Herb Garden took me 10 days or so to do. It’s doable in 1 and then with painting you have to wait for it to dry before you put next coat on. But you know sometimes busy life and weather conditions won’t allow you to do it as quickly as you want lol.
      The idea with this website was to put everything you need in one place to make any kind of pallet projects so you don’t have to waste time looking for solutions all over the internet. And yes this is my only website for now:) Thank you for dropping by 🙂

  2. What a great idea! I live in a rental so this would be the perfect project! I’m not much of a gardener but do make an attempt every spring to get flowers and plant them with my daughter. Could you also put flowers in these? I think it would be so pretty.

    1. Hi Melody, thanks for your comment 🙂 I’m glad that you like this pallet project and flowers are a definitely great idea! The hanging kind would look awesome. I may do that myself actually lol Just have to wait till spring unfortunately. I’ll keep you posted on this one. Meanwhile have a great Monday!


  3. I love to garden and love DIY, so I am glad I found this post. This is a great step by step guide on how to make an herb garden out of pallets. Do you have a recommendation on where I can get pallets from? Your end product looks like something we would buy in a store. Looks great! I am going to try this once I find pallets to use. Thanks for the idea. Spring is only a little time away.

    1. Hi Rina,
      I’m sorry for late reply but the end of the year is usually very busy for me and I don’t have as much time as I wish I had to work on my blog. Anyway, I’m pleased you liked my project :)It’was pretty straightforward although now after over 1 year later I’d change one thing. The material I’ve used for the shelves. I’d either make them all wooden or used something different. Although it still holds the turf it seems to tear easily when pulled and it might eventually start to deteriorate. I definitely have to look into it 🙂
      As for your question. It’s easier to find some pallets from local places like a small garden and hardware stores. If you need more info why not check these articles: Preparing Pallets for Upcycling – All You Need to Know Guide and Getting Started Working With Pallets.
      Thanks for stopping by!


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