One way to create privacy or block a potential eye-sore is by using a living wall planter – natural beauty plus carefully selected placement makes this a win/win. Visual curb-appeal is increased, and the amount of beautiful plants you have in your landscape increases as well. See how we used a strip of lattice and cedar boards to create this living wall planter as a privacy wall for our front porch.
Why Create a Living Planting Wall
We have a large air conditioning unit in the wall by our front porch. It’s a bit of an eye sore. Not to mention that sitting in my favorite porch chairs means our across the street neighbors have an excellent view of my private morning-coffee-drinking-spot. Morning. Not enough coffee. ‘nough said – privacy screen needed.
But I didn’t want something that would look as bad as the air conditioner and be equally annoying a view as my neighbor’s trash cans. So, yes – creative and beautiful solution was needed.,,
Supplies Need for a Living Planting Wall
- Strip of lattice. (We used the vinyl lattice so it would hold up longer.)
- 1 x 4 boards – We used naturally water-resistant cedar boards and since we already had 1 x 8 boards my husband split them in half with a table saw so we could repurpose what we already had.
- Plants – at least 3 dozen total. I think it looks best with no more than 2 kinds of plants.
I used ice plant in the middle of the planted wall and colorful red petunias around the outside of the wall. I like the way these two plants contrast but both have a naturally trailing growth habit that should fill in the whole wall nicely. Other plants that might work well include coleus, calibrachoa, begonia, verbena, creeping phlox, or ground cover sedums. Many of the bulk-pack bedding plants would work well for a planting wall. If you wanted to include edibles in your living wall, you might try something like lettuce, thyme, or strawberry plants.
How to Make a Living Planted Wall
We set our living wall to go from our porch rail to the bottom of the porch support beam. You’ll need to measure your own space first. We cut two lengths of lattice to fit the available space. Then Sidney built the box itself with a 4 inch depth so it would fit nicely onto the porch rail. This first step was about getting the lattice sized for the space, and then creating the box edges for the lattice to be secured onto. Tack the lattice into place with finishing nails or glue – we used an air gun to drive the nails to avoid splitting the wood.
Sidney built the edging on the backside to help secure the lattice when we filled the box – I’ll show that step in a second. Once the box is made you’ll fill it. We put weed mat down in the back to keep the soil from falling out. Then we filled it with potting soil and container mix. We didn’t quote fill the box completely because I wanted some “wiggle room” for when I was planting the plants.
Next, you’ll put the top lattice into place. I didn’t plant the plants until the lattice was on top so I could be sure I had them in the proper space. The lattice helped keep them very secure as well. Tack the lattice in place with finishing nails or staples again. Then use a small spade, cultivator, or hey – spoon! to plant your plants.
Once all the plants are planted into the wall lattice, you can finish filling it in with dirt. Once all of that is finished, we can add the edging boards around the front. I love how these boards make the whole thing look like a picture frame.
We centered the wall on the porch and my husband tacked it into place. His measurements were so precise it was actually “wedged” into place once we placed it up there so it was easy to support. I was surprised how little the plants and dirt shifted!
Buh-bye eye sore. Buh-bye prying neighbor’s eyes. Hello gorgeous flowers!
This post was written as part of the Lowe’s Creative Ideas blogging team and you can find out more ways to improve curb appeal and home decor inspirations for the coming holiday season in the free Lowe’s Creative Ideas magazine. These posts are not paid, but I do receive gift certificates for supplies to create these posts for you. What plants would you put in your screen?