String up lights anywhere in your yard with these container gardens that double as sturdy hanging posts. 
Read step by step instructions after the video.

String lights bring a warm, inviting glow to outdoor spaces, but figuring out how to hang them securely can be tricky. If you're decorating an attached deck or porch, you can typically install the lights to the structure's support beams, posts, or railing. But if you want to hang string lights farther out in your yard, such as a firepit area or a freestanding deck or patio, you might need to create your own supports for stringing lights.

This simple outdoor project lets you easily assemble sturdy posts for string lights without digging holes in your yard. Container gardens filled with a foundation of concrete serve as the base for the wood posts, and cup hooks hold the strands of lights in place. Because they're not set into the ground, you can easily reposition as needed or take them down at the end of the season. The string-light planters also provide an opportunity to add color to your yard with pretty flowers or lush greenery.

Determine how many planters you plan to make and gather your materials before you begin. You'll need one 4x4 wood post, one wood barrel planter, one cup hook, and at least two corner braces for each one. Learn how to make these DIY string-light planters to brighten up any area of your backyard.

  • Working time 3 hrs
  • Start to finish 2 days
  • Difficulty Kind of Easy
  • Involves Drilling, Pouring Concrete, Planting

What you need


How to do it

Part 1

Step 1

Place Wood Posts in Planters

Set the planters in your desired locations before you begin. Place one 4x4 post into a planter. Use a level to ensure it's straight, and have a helper hold the post in place. Use corner braces to fasten the post to the bottom of the planter. Attach braces to the post first and center it inside the planter before screwing the braces into the bottom. These will keep the post steady as you pour the concrete. Make sure your screws are short enough that they won't poke through the bottom of the planter.

sitting area black chairs posts lights deck
Step 2

Set with Concrete

Pour fast-setting concrete mix into the planter. Following the package instructions, add water and stir to mix. Make sure the concrete is several inches below the top of the planter to leave room for potting. Repeat these steps with additional planters. Allow the concrete to cure overnight.

modern patio succulents planter deck post
Step 3

Plant Container Gardens

Once the concrete is set, drill drainage holes through the sides of each planter above the concrete line. Pour a layer of rock on top of the concrete to help with drainage. Top with potting soil and add your desired plants to the containers.

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Step 4

Attach String Lights

At the top of each post, drill a pilot hole and insert a cup hook for hanging lights. String the lights through each hook and secure with zip ties if desired. Plug in the lights to illuminate your outdoor space.

By Jessica BennettJoseph Wanek and Sonja Carmon


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