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Concrete Block Planter

Turn a humble concrete block into an outdoor planter. Our downloadable patterns make it easy.

Painted concrete block planter with chickens

Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

A few hours

Estimated Cost


Tools & Materials


  • Stiff-bristle brush
  • Straightedge or ruler
  • Scissors or crafts knife


  • 8-in x 8-in x 8-in concrete block
  • 10-ft x 12-in white shelf liner, #223760
  • Valspar signature paint, Pantone String (PN1050) and Pantone Nectarine (PN3040) (Other colors below.)

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

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Project Resources


Paint a Flower Design

Step 1

Clean the block thoroughly with a stiff-bristle brush and vacuum clean.

Good to Know

Avoid washing a concrete block with soap and water unless you can allow several days for it to dry.

Step 2

Download and print the flower from the Concrete Planter Patterns and transfer the pattern onto a piece of shelf liner. Cut out the center and petals with scissors or a crafts knife.

Step 3

Center the round flower center on the concrete block and position a petal above, below, and to the left and right of the center. Then apply evenly spaced petals around the center. Press all cutout edges firmly against the concrete.

Good to Know

One opening in the block is slightly larger than the other. Plan your stencil to place the wide opening on top.

Step 4

Brush on a coat of the concrete-matching color (Pantone String shown) so any paint seeping under the stencil on the porous concrete surface will match the background color.

Step 5

Paint all four sides, but not the top, a contrasting color (Pantone Nectarine shown). When it dries, add a second and third coat as needed for even color. Remove the shelf liner pattern after the final coat.

Step 6

Position the block where you want to display it, fill the cavity with soil, and plant flowers. For an alternative use, place a 3-1/2-inch-diameter glass or cup of water inside the block, and use it to display cut flowers. Estimated cost: $11 for the first block, $1.47 each for additional block.

Good to Know

Because this planter has no bottom, muddy water will drain directly onto the surface below. Avoid placing it on a wooden deck or any other surface that would be marred as water runs through the soil.

More Decorative Block Ideas

Step 1

Lavender concrete block with stripes

Paint the entire block with Pantone String and let dry. Wrap the block with painter’s tape in the pattern you prefer and apply a second coat of Pantone String. Then brush on similar finishes -- shown are Simply Lavender (#4001-9B) above Berries Galore (#4001-10B) -- while both coats are still wet using an ombré technique.

Step 2

Stenciled feather pattern

Download and print the feathers from the Concrete Planter Patterns and transfer the pattern onto a piece of shelf liner. Repeat Steps 3, 4, and 5 from “Paint a Flower Design” to complete the stencil, shown here in Morning Sun (#3001-2).

Step 3

Concrete block with stenciled numbers

Select the 4-inch stencils (#236782) of your choice or transfer the 3-inch-tall designs from Concrete Planter Patterns to shelf liner and cut out the stencils. Apply them to the block and lightly dab on a contrasting color -- shown here in Filoli Morning Glory (#5003-10B).