Spruce up your fall front porch with a gorgeous pumpkin planter.

By BH&G Holiday Editors
Updated August 31, 2020
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A pumpkin filled with the season's prettiest blooms is our favorite way to greet fall. This easy pumpkin decorating idea starts with a variety of plants and flowers, so you can customize your planter to fit your fall decorating scheme. Because this front porch display lasts all season long, you can make it before Halloween and leave it up through Thanksgiving. It's quick and easy to make and is sure to wow the neighbors. The hardest part will be choosing which fall flowers to feature! We'll show you how to make your own pumpkin planter in just three simple steps.

pumpkin planter with fall mums
Credit: Jacob Fox

How to Make a Pumpkin Planter

Supplies Needed

  • Faux or real pumpkin
  • Knife
  • Plastic garbage bag
  • Drill
  • Small rocks
  • Potting soil
  • Assorted seasonal plants

Step-by-Step Directions

With a few supplies and these how-to instructions, you can create your own fall pumpkin decoration. Fill your pumpkin craft with your favorite fresh or dried flowers. Once you have the materials, you should be able to complete the project in about 30 minutes.

Step 1: Prepare Your Pumpkin

The first thing to do is choose your pumpkin: Look for a large fresh pumpkin, or pick up a faux orange pumpkin ($28, Funkins). For either kind, prepare the pumpkin by gently cutting a generous top opening with a pumpkin carving kit, ($10, Target). We found it was easiest to use a sawing motion to cut the top off the pumpkin. If using a fresh pumpkin, hollow out the center. Use a drill to create a few small drainage holes. Insert a plastic garbage bag as a liner for the pumpkin and poke holes for drainage. Cover with a light layer of pea gravel or rocks, such as Grey Beach Stones, ($9, Crate & Barrel).

Step 2: Fill With Dirt

Half-fill the pumpkin with a potting mix made for use in container gardens (don't use garden soil). An 8-quart bag of Miracle-Gro Premium Potting Mix, ($4, Target) should be enough to fill a large pumpkin. Do not overfill your pumpkin, as you'll want to make sure you have plenty of room to add your plants. We chose small flowers and greenery like lamb's ear but you could fill your planter with fresh herbs or dried flowers.

putting flowers in pumpkin planter
Credit: Carson Downing

Step 3: Add Plants

Add plants, then water thoroughly. Be sure not to over-water your pumpkin container. Excess moisture will cause the pumpkin to deteriorate. Get our helpful tips for making your pumpkin last longer. Choose a variety of plants that work well together including flowers, ornamental grasses, and herbs. Try experimenting with different plant combinations. Loosen the roots before planting and fill in spaces with potting soil. Tuck any visible garbage bag into the pumpkin. Once your planter is complete, display it on your front porch with in-season decor such as pumpkins, small gourds, and even hay bales.

Comments (1)

September 27, 2018
I made 4 of these last week. They are fun and pretty. However, the pumpkins began rotting by the 4th day. By the 6th day they stunk and the little black flies were everywhere. today they went out in my yard and garden pickup bin. If I do it again, it will be with artificial pumpkins.