How to Make a Vertical Herb Garden From a Fence

If your yard is short on space, go vertical with a garden wall made from a section of metal fence, basic lumber and redwood planter boxes.

DIY Vertical Herb Garden 01:00

Skill Level
Estimated Cost $200
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Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Tools and Materials

We used redwood to make our planter boxes; cedar is also a good choice.

  • (4) 2x2 x 8' redwood
  • (4) 2x6 x 8' redwood
  • (4) 1x6 x 8' redwood
  • (1) metal fence panel
  • exterior-grade paint-and-primer-all-in-one
  • exterior-grade polyurethane
  • paintbrush
  • spray paint
  • metal hooks
  • metal strapping
  • bolts, washers and nuts
  • exterior-grade screws
  • jigsaw
  • clamps
  • drill
  • measuring tape
  • level
  • hacksaw
  • miter saw or circular saw
  • post-hole digger
  • landscape fabric (optional)
  • concrete
  • soil
  • herbs
Find all the tools and materials for this project at

Step 1: Cut Fence Panel

Use a hacksaw to cut the fence panel to 6'.

Step 2: Build Frame

Build a frame for the herb garden. Use two 2x6 x 8’ for the legs. To each leg, add a 2x2 cut to 5’11” for the fence panel to rest on. We used a scrap piece of fence to measure and mark the placement of the fence and its two 2x2 "sandwich" pieces. Our 2x2s are attached 1” in from the edge of the 2x6. Exterior screws are used to secure the 2x6 and 2x2 together.

Step 3: Attach Top and Bottom

Secure the top and bottom to the legs with screws. The top should be cut to 52-7/16” and the bottom should be 49-7/16”. The bottom board will fit within the leg boards, while the top will span across the top of the legs and sit flush with the outside edge of the 2x6s. Test-fit the fence section to make sure it works.

Step 4: Paint

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Apply exterior-grade paint-and-primer-all-in-one to the frame and the remaining two 2x2s cut to 5’11”. Let it all completely dry. (Painting the frame before attaching the fence panel will help keep paint off the fence panel.)

Step 5: Add Fence Panel

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

Add the fence panel to the frame. It should slide in for a snug fit.

Step 6: Secure Fence Panel

Attach the remaining 2x2s on top of the fence panel, securing them to the legs with screws. Make sure they fit tightly against the fence panel to keep it in place.

Step 7: Install Wall

Dig two 12” holes the same distance apart as the legs, roughly 50”. Place the wall in the holes, making sure it is evenly spaced and sitting level.

Step 8: Cement It In

Pour quick-setting concrete in the holes and add water; follow manufacturer’s instructions for the proper amounts. Double-check that the wall is sitting level. Let the concrete set for 24 hours.

Step 9: Prep Box Hardware

The hooks on the back of the planter boxes are attached with metal strapping. Cut the strapping to the desired length; we cut ours about 8”. Avoid cutting through the holes, and spray-paint the strapping and the bolts the same color using exterior-grade spray paint. If the galvanized look is preferred, feel free to skip the paint.

Step 10: Build Planter Boxes

Use 1x6s to build planter boxes. We used redwood because it’s chemical-free and stands up to moisture. Vary the sizes of the boxes however you’d like. Here is the cut list for the sizes we made.
- Box A: cut two pieces at 42” for the front and back, one at 40-1/2” for the bottom, and cut two at 5-1/2” for the sides.
- Box B: cut two pieces at 36” for the front and back, one at 34-1/2” for the bottom, and cut two at 5-1/2” for the sides.
- Box C: cut two pieces at 30” for the front and back, one at 28-1/2” for the bottom, and cut two at 5-1/2” for the sides.
- Box D: cut two pieces at 8” for the front and back, one at 6-1/2” for the bottom, and cut two at 5-1/2” for the sides.

- Box E: cut four pieces at 10” for the sides and one piece at 4” for the bottom.

Use an exterior-grade polyurethane to seal the outside surface of the box. Drill a few 3/16” drainage holes in the bottom of the boxes.

Step 11: Add Hanging Hardware

On each box, use two pieces of metal strapping, two hooks, and four bolts, nuts and washers for hanging. Use the strapping as a guide for your holes. To keep them hanging level, go 4” down from the top and 3” from the outside edges for the first hole. Add an additional bolt below using the strapping as a guide for your next hole. Add the hook to the top hole of the strapping using a nut and bolt.

Step 12: Plant and Hang Boxes

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

If you’d like, line the boxes with landscape fabric to help protect the wood. Add soil, your favorite herbs and then hang them up.

Photo by: Gary Payne

Gary Payne

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