Build this nature inspired branch ladder plant stand!

 Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

A nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand

Most of you know my love for decorating with nature. From branch handled toolboxes,  twig garlands to firewood stars and log candles, shopping my own backyard has long been my fav shopping mall for home decor.

I’m a real branch fanatic in particular, so when Stacy from Not Just a Housewife sent me her beautiful new book, Natural Accents (Amazon affiliate link) to review, I kinda squealed, and darted for the wood section.

This post contains some affiliate links in which I earn a small percentage if you purchase anything through these links, at no extra cost to you. Thank-you for helping to support my blog!

Flower Market ladder-0868
Flower Market ladder-0866
Flower Market ladder-0864

Flower Market ladder-0860

Natural Accents – find on Amazon HERE

And I wasn’t disappointed. How beautiful is this book?!

I’ve read a lot of decorating books, and I will say, this is one that won’t outdate itself anytime soon. The projects are truly unique, easy to do, and timeless. Lovely, sharp illustrations with easy to follow instructions. It’s like your own Pinterest on paper without endless clicking. πŸ™‚

And oh my gosh… there’s even a chapter on how to take care of houseplants. I’d better read that…. 6x. πŸ™‚

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters
Well Stacy, your book most certainly inspired me to invent a nature inspired branch ladder plant stand, vs. using a ladder I already had. My patio is finally starting to look like summer!

Here’s how I did it…

How to build a branch ladder plant stand:


Supplies I used:


Two 2x4s

Various thick branches for the rungs

Outdoor durable paint of choice

Funky Junk’s Old Sign Stencils:

Cordless drill

Miter saw

Stencil brush

Paint brush

Various buckets for planters

ama.Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters



1. Cut two 2×4’s to desired length.

2. Stain or paint the ladder sides as desired before assembling. 

I didn’t’ have any long reclaimed 2x4s on hand so I used two new ones. I’d rather paint new wood vs old anyway. A little backwards decor theory there…

I used white ceiling paint, with no primer. Because it’s all I had in stock. I find it self primes and wears like nails, so it’s all good!

Decorate a branch ladder plant stand with a Farmers' Market stencil!

Market Extensions | Funky Junk's Old Sign Stencils Super, Flea, Vintage and Flower that mixes and matches with Farmers' Market

Funky Junk’s Old Sign Stencils:

Farmers’ Market

Market Extensions – Flower

2. Stencil along sides of ladder if desired.

I wanted the ladder to wear something unique. Like… a flower sign, as if it were set up to sell beautiful, abundant flowers at the weekend flea market.

With the current Farmers’ MARKET stencil, you can make any kinda market sign you wish with this Market Extensions Collection. 4 new mix and match options! Today I am showcasing Flower.

Here’s how I did this:

Decorate a branch ladder plant stand with a Farmers' Market stencil!

(the above picture shows a previous Farmers’ Market design that has since been changed)

How to mix and match stencils on a thin surface


a) Position the Farmer’s Market stencil first. Stencil the word Market only.

b) Slip an extra board underneath the stencil, and pencil-in the registration marks.

c) Remove the Market stencil, and position the FLOWER stencil by lining up the registration marks on the stencil with your previous stencil marks. Stencil the image.

I then made the wood look older by beating and scraping across it with a hammer, then slightly sanding it with a palm sander. 

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

How cute is that?!

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

3. Decide how wide you’d like your ladder, then cut branches that length on straight angles.

The hardest part of this project was attempting to cut the branches on the same angles. But with rustic branches, just remember, wonky works. πŸ™‚

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

4. Measure and mark how far apart you’d like the branch rungs along the outside of the ladder sides.

5. Attach branches by pre-drilling pilot holes into the sides of the 2x4s, then screwing in each branch rung from the outside.

I love collecting branches when I go for mountain walks, so I had these guys on hand. The branches are a little on the hefty side, perfect rung material.

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

Seriously… how rustically cute are these branch rungs?!

How to plant galvanized buckets for flower planters on a ladder! Click for full tutorial and see the beautiful outcome! #planters #flowers #ladder

6. Collect various galvanized buckets (with handles if possible) to use as planters.

A beat up collection of galvanized junk and other odds and sods came to the rescue for the planters.

7. Pre-drill holes into the bottoms of the buckets, then place rocks or gravel to cover the holes. Add soil.

8. Hang buckets to the ladder rungs, with screws for each handle.

8. Once buckets are hung, plant, then water.

I found adding the plants AFTER the buckets were already on the ladder to help me place what plant I desired where.

Ready to see how adorable this turned out?!

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

Ladder reveal


How adorable is this?! Welcome to my very own little Flower Market! On my patio.

The branch ladder acts as a plant holder that takes nearly no room, perfect for tight spaces! That’s the handy thing about height!

Various planters were grouped together on a nearby table to add to the flower ambiance.

Pretty cute, right?!

Here’s some added tips on how to plant what, where…

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

Flower planting tip:


Much like decorating the interior of your home, I did the same with flowers when deciding what to plant where:

  • set the flowers on the floor
  • mix and match by colour and how they will trail down
  • arrange so the planters don’t have wide open empty gaps that will never be filled in

It’s fun to play and see what you come up with!

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters

Plant names


And in case you’d like to know the names of all these plants and flowers, here they are…

Top planter / Bellagio begonia (looks like pom poms!!) and Wire Vine (adore!!)

Middle planter / pastel violets and Moneywort

Bottom planter / lost the tag

Display your summer flowers vertically on a charming nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand built with 2x4s and branches! Click for full tutorial including fun stencils to use! #gardening #flowers #ladders #planters
Smaller bucket on rail / Sparks Will Fly begonia and Silver Falls

Taller bucket on table / Unbelievable begonia and Golden Sunset

Clay planter / violets and ivy

(aren’t you proud of me for saving the plant tags?!)

– – – – –

Anyway, I’m rather smitten with how this nature-inspired branch ladder plant stand turned out! It takes up virtually no room, it’s easy to maintain because everything is in one spot, and you can even move the planters around if desired!

They’re going to look even cuter once they grow in more!

Think you’ll give a branch ladder plant stand a go this summer?


This post was also originally part of a giveaway which is now over. Congrats #38 Carol B!


Other related projects you may enjoy:

Learn how to create these charming IKEA hacked garden-themed crates! Click for full tutorial.

Make garden-themed IKEA crates

Learn how to build a simple garden-themed gate out of reclaimed wood! Click for full tutorial plus video.

Build an easy garden-themed reclaimed wood gate

Learn how to build a garden-themed walkway made from scrap wood and garden stencils! Click for full tutorial plus helpful video!

Learn how to create this scrap wood garden-themed walkway

Visit many other OUTDOOR and GARDENING projects

Get inspired with MANY other stencil projects HERE

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Categories: All Cool Projects, DIY, Gardening, Junk Drawer, Old Sign Stencils, Outdoors, Seasonal, Signs, Summer
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152 thoughts on “Build this nature inspired branch ladder plant stand!

  1. Love it Donna … NOW, I just want to take everything off our front porch … make that ladder and redecorate the entire porch. Love your idea on the MARKET Extensions stencils. Need to order.
    Audrey Z. @ Timeless Treasures

  2. Hey Donna! Love the ladder. I have an old rusty milk can and a home made wooden bench that need some TLC. I need ideas!

  3. Love the branch ladder planter idea. I was thinking I could use the stencils to make some signage for a room I’m working on that needs a bit of character.

  4. Love the book, totally would love to read it. Definitely would use the stencils- love, love the flower market sign you made! Thanks!!!!

  5. I love love love your ladder and would totally like to steal it, lol, but it wouldn’t look as good on my porch as it does yours. Love it!!

  6. What a great idea your twig ladder/planter is. I have a vintage ladder at home and was trying to think how to incorporate it into my garden. Hanging the plants in old buckets ( have been collecting those) and then adding such a cute stenciled sign is brilliant and do-able. Great idea.

  7. I’d love to make a “Flea Market” ladder for our new house. My new house is B E I G E and B O R I N G. This is something it could use on the back patio! We are getting ready to move, and all the plants are coming with us. We could easily plop them in an appropriate container, and all would be good!

  8. What a creative idea – your imagination and creativity are unlimited!! I would live to create vintage signs for an old shuttered door that i have on my porch! It is great how your stencils are interchangable!!

  9. La ti da! Now that’s what I’m talking about!!!
    love it!!!!!
    The ladder is to die for, but I gotta tell you I love the flower market idea and the buckets of flowers hanging!
    Very, Very cool…
    I love to view your creative side Donna!!!!!

  10. I’ve been eyeing those market stencils for some time now. I’ve got plans for creating a work area in my garage and they would should come in handy for use on some wall crates. I’m also intrigue with that cool looking book. I’m hooked.

  11. i’m imagining the Farmer’s Market Stencil over my pantry door, and the Flower Market stencil over my potting bench. Love love love it!

  12. Donna, I love it. I have ‘used’ 2×4’s and I am envisioning it near the couch and hanging afghans and quilts on it. I have an old step ladder there now but it would be better for my plants (an idea I got from an earlier post from you). My mind is swirling with ideas. Thank you for your constant inspiration.

  13. I have a gardening friend who always has the biggest blooms on the block and can grow ANYTHING. #sostinkinjealous Every year for Christmas I try to come up with something to contribute to her garden/gardening – the premise being that a portion of it will be handmade and hopefully it is something that isn’t readily available. Last year I made her a gorgeous pieced wood flower basket ( and I’m thinking you have provided an idea for the perfect Xmas2015 gift – she’s going to love it!

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  14. Donna you truly inspired me with your last post to not be jealous and get busy! That ladder held more inspiration. I have an old paint ladder with a wooden paint can holder in my living room. It holds throws right now. A change is in the works. Love the stencil!

  15. Donna! great way to move your creative mojo! So cute, ladders are one of my fav decor items inside and out. Happy trails!

  16. Oh my gosh, can I say Wonky Wonderful !! This is soooo darn cute and I think that I can even build it. Great inspiration.
    Carol b

  17. I love the ladder…have been looking for years for an old ladder but it seems like those are in high demand in my area! If you can’t find it, build it yourself!

  18. I pinned it twice, onto my Rustic builds, and onto my Projects unique. Maybe I should also put it on my To Do board too. I really want to make this. It’s my second fave project. Your twig branch tool box is my favorite!
    Carol b

  19. I just love your ladder!!! The stencils are wonderful as well! I recently rediscovered stenciling, when I made signs for my son’s wedding. What fun! I have been trying to think of a fun fall stencil project, I think these new stencils are a must have!!! Have you thought about alphabet stencils with a fun font? Most at hobby stores are boring!! Thanks for starting my Monday on a creative note!!!!!

  20. Love, love, love the ladder. Just saw on an old ladder on pinterest with birdhouses. Now I want to combine that with your ladder look!! Thank you!

  21. LOVE it ALL! I am using an old crust step ladder with paint bucket planters this year. Turned out cute! Especially juxtaposed against this modern house. I hauled lots of ‘stuffs’ from our farm when we sold… so I would love to put your stencils to use on my old boards! The book looks yummy too! (even without supper.)

  22. Ooh, I absolutely love your rustic ladder. I’m sure Stacy’s book is full of clever ideas to keep me busy for at least a year! Love your stencil sign extensions.

  23. ooooh I love the ladder…I’ve been looking around for ages trying to find an old one that I could use…Now I can just make one!! LUV the buckets too!!

  24. Love this!!! What a cute way to add height with your flowers! I can see hanging herbs in mine! Now…off to collect some branches!

  25. I love the ladder and the stencil! I need to make a ladder to display quilts. And I’d love to use the stencil on a long box that my husband made for me. It is painted red and has been waiting for the perfect something to put on the side. I think that this stencil is it! Thanks for sharing your ideas!

  26. I really love your Branch Handle Toolboxes, but this ladder is another wonderful looking design. I’m like you, I like anything that is rugged looking but soft. Branches and recycled wood anything are my favorites!! This prize package would be a fabulous win.

  27. What fantastic timing! I was going to order the Beach collection and I’ll order this to add to the Market stencils I have already. I’m gearing up for a sale I’ll have before Christmas and with the word “vintage” I’m going take a sign for the doorway where people come in!

  28. I’d like to try using the stencil on a rope basket, not sure how it will turn out with the unevenness…! thanks for the chance

  29. I have an old ladder, over 50 years old, that I have at my front door and seasonally decorate. I never thought to tie buckets and hang! I would love to try the stencils on a vintage window frame for my fireplace mantle….out to the woods I go!!

  30. I would love to win and “borrow” that LADDER too! Winning the book and stencils would keep me outta jail! And the stencils…..sigh! They are fabulous! (And so is everything else on your blog-read it daily!)

    Thank you for the opportunity to enter – Sue @ Serendipisty

  31. Oooooohmygosh! I would never of thought to use branches for a ladder! I am presently redoing my kitchen with old cupboards that are nearly a 100 years old. I’d like to steal that ladder and hang potted herbs in my antique tea and coffee pots! It would look totally rad in my kitchen!! I would use the stencils for signs in the house and for garden art. We salvaged all the wood from our aged pig barn that got flattened with a tornado a few years back… its from the 1800’s!

  32. Here’s another planting tip for you. πŸ™‚

    Instead of using rocks in your containers, use packing peanuts…they will be much lighter. If I’m plant a very large container I also use cleaned plastic food containers with the lids on. Yogurt, cool whip, sour cream, ect all work fine & take up a lot of space to save on dirt but still give some drainage.

    Another idea is to use metal hooks instead of twine to hang them. With my very hot summers, it helps to be able to move my containers easily into the full shade or near the water source.

    Love, love love the plants you chose here too! I would so love to win the book as well.

  33. I love the stencil additions, especially the flea market one. The book looks great, I like the projects with the wood rounds!!

  34. I would love the FLEA market stencil since that is what I go to every weekend in the summer. I would make a sign for my craft room.

  35. I can’t steal your ladder because you live too far but I would use your stencils on my house sidings if I could and hide it from my hubby!!!!!!

  36. WOW! When you get your mojo back, you don’t fool around! This is truly spectacular…love the texture the branches offer…but then you took it a step further and hung beautiful plants from it…like HOLY WOW!!! The stencil is gorgeous, too! Brava, Donna…welcome back! πŸ™‚

  37. I would like to build some long old looking tool boxes out of old fence boards, to use for fall greenery and pumpkins. I could stencil words on them, doesn’t that sound like fun. Thanks for the chance to win the stencils. Patty B.

  38. Love the ladder!! So simple, and cute!
    Always intrigued by your projects and style!
    We have acres of woods,so always looking for new ideas to use
    pieces of wood or bark that are just too beautiful (knot holes,moss,etc)
    for firewood. Thank you for your blog! Such a joy to read.

  39. I too, am a branch collector. Now you have inspired me on how to use them. Thanks so much for sharing. Love it!

  40. I would really want a ladder just like yours on my front porch. And, what a great idea to interchange the stencils. Being on a fixed income, I am always looking for ways to save money.

  41. This flower ladder would be cute if you need to shade a window that gets too much afternoon sun. Shade and pretty all in one.

  42. Thanks for the inspiration Donna! The ladder looks great! Can’t wait to see the rest of the porch! Also enjoyed all of your posts from Hawaii!

  43. Loving this ladder and the stencils. I’m with you, I love the branches on my crepe myrtle that I trim every year. Ive made a twig ladder that I hang my grandmother’s handmade quilts on and have used limbs for hanging baskets and anything I can think of. I’m hoping to win the Natural Accents book and the stencils. It’s a fantastic giveaway and will be fantastic for the many gifts I make at Christmas time. Loving your stencils. I’ve recently bought some, but haven’t had time to try them out yet. Way too much crafting and not near enough time….boo.
    Hope you’re enjoying your week!

  44. I am making plans already to steal that ladder! It is going to be a hike since I live in Florida, but I don’t care. I can do plants, but carpentry skills are non existent. I love that project. You did good.

  45. Cute ladder!
    I would love to have that stencil… I’d be taggin anything that had a clear surface!
    Seriously, I’m thinking of all sorts of things to paint those stencils on… I mean Christmas is right around the corner. They could make some cute presents. πŸ˜‰

  46. Dear Donna, I truly love your ladder, at first I thought it was an old one that you used until I got to looking closer at it. I have a old ladder in my stockpile just waiting for something spactular and when I saw your post I got so excited I can’t hardly wait to get busy and see it all together on my porch, and the cast iron dutch oven is a great idea. Thank you for the inspiration and ofcourse I also hope I win the new stencils. I just received the tree farm stencils and made your tree farm sign , I realize its a little early in the season to hang it but I don’t care I love it. Keep up the inspiration. Joy

  47. I’m lovin the ladder! The stencils would be perfect for the Furniture Carts I restore. I could picture them in a rustic flower shop with the “Flower Market” stencil.

    Last time we came home we brought river rock back in our suitcase…the book looks like a perfect fit for us!

  48. Thank you for this giveaway opportunity. I love your stencils, especially this one. Farmers’ Market is my favorite, but the new Flea Market is a close second.

  49. Oh my goodness I love that ladder just the way you have done it. I think I might try to make one just like it for my porch. Buckets will be on my junking list today!!

  50. Donna, you are so creative! Love the ladder…I, too, collect sticks from my hikes in the woods. Hope to get inspired by more ideas from Stacy’s book.

  51. Love. that.
    I have a collection of old wood ladders in my shed and pails in my basement along with a blank spot in my kitchen. I am inspired to do a farmers market ladder and put my potatoes, onions…in the pails.
    The branch idea is way cool.

  52. Hi Donna!

    I’m so going to steal your idea making this awesome ladder. We lost a white birch tree a couple of years ago and when cutting it down, I saved a bunch of the long branches because I just knew I could do something with them. Although, I have caught my husband putting them in the green barrel for our trash man to pick up on numerous occasions! I have managed to drag them back out and hide them in various places from him. But I think you have hit the nail on the head in getting him envolved with building this. After he sees what can be done with old limbs, I just think he might well be convinced I’m not that crazy lady he thinks I am. ;-). Thanks again for sharing this!!

  53. I have just now gotten into nature art….I’m not sure I can even wait to see if I can win the book. It is an absolute must have…and, the stencils are exactly my style!!!! love, love, love!!!!

  54. I love the ladder! I have an old wash tub that I plan on turning into a stool/storage. I think I will add some stenciling as well. Thanks for all the amazing ideas!!

  55. i’m looking to make a bench for my flower pots to fill a space on the porch. It would be adorable with a cute sign to enhance the flavor I’m looking for.

  56. I love the ladder idea. It’s space saving as well as visually adding height to a small space. I have a couple container’s that may work well. Very fun!

  57. This is great! Your ideas are always SO amazing.
    I can see using the stencils on different Pallet Projects. I managed to actually find some pallets that are tongue and groove. Can’t wait to make something with them! The stencils would be a bonus.


  58. I have your Fresh Cut Tree Farm stencil and LOVE it!! Love the ladder idea. I need to shake up the seasons!

  59. I want to make that ladder! We are having a vintage market in October and I have several ladder and pallet wood projects to use the stencils on.

  60. Pinned your ladder on my Must-do list. Not stealing it, but stealing your idea. Thanks. Also love the magazine. I ordered your stencils and so anxious to get started making signs and the ladder of course.
    Keep the great inspirations coming.
    Audrey Z. @ Timeless Treasures

  61. That book looks like it is right up my alley. I am always bringing in things from outside. I have a whole printers tray filled with nature. As far as the stencils, I would love to make a Flea Market sign, since that’s where a lot of my decor comes from also. I already have a whole bunch of old boards just waiting to be made in to something wonderful.

  62. Yes, since I have not won the book, yet; it would be best to just borrow yours. We don’t have a lot of limbs in our yard…the ones that have been here are really whimpy. The neighbor does have a BIG one, pulled to the back of her lot, after this last storm…hmmmm! (I have done such a thing — last year, I found a huge limb, it was dragging on the street behind the truck. It became a Halloween tree and then a Christmas tree.)

    Okay, so I have the limbs covered, all I need is the book and the stencils…in order not to show up at your doorstep looking real pitiful.

    Hahahaha — thank-you for the chance. Shared

  63. Wow….I love the ladder! You’ve inspired me to try one of my own. I can’t wait until the next flea market comes to town so I can go on the hunt for some old buckets to fill. I’ve got an old galvanized tub that I think would look cute filled with flowers and then stenciled for my front porch. Thanks for the post!

  64. I am newly retired and ready to spend the winter planning projects. The first thing I want to tackle is my covered patio. I have a concrete floor which runs 30 feet to a wooden fence. My patio is covered with a wooden roof out 15 feet and is 12 feet wide. We have a log swing, log table with 2 log chairs and 2 log benches, another log bench, a double log tΓͺte-Γ -tΓͺte with a log end table in between, and another log end table beside the swing.
    I sit and swing and look at all the rafters above me and the 3 open sides of the patio, and the back wooden fence. After looking at that ladder that is exactly what I need for a starting point to lean against one side of the patio with a matching one on the other side. So I want to steal that ladder badly!
    My trellises need replacing badly and I know that book would have ideas I could use.
    And the stencils…….something sweet could be stencils on the front of the patio welcoming friends.
    The fence might say, Vines Grown Here!
    So many ideas are going through my mind I can’t type fast enough.
    Please Lord, I need to win. And I need this lady in my life for sheer inspiration!
    Kathy Behrend

  65. Love the Ladder!

    Been a while since a progect stirred my Mojo! Would love to win the Stencils! I have many items that have been waiting for their next life!

  66. I wish my mind worked the way yours does. To be able to come up with such unique and original ideas that are so visually appealing! I’m just happy that you share them with the rest of us. I would love to win the book and stencils and see if I can activate my own creativity to come up with something unique as well (after I copy your ladder, of course πŸ™‚ . Thanks for sharing your gift. My day is brightened every time you do.

  67. Absolutely love this !
    moved to the country a little while ago have plenty of nature around
    just need the inspiration
    The book would be just what I need

  68. I love wood diy projects and this one is nice one to do for a house warming gift for my daughters new home in the country way way in the country

  69. Love your blog. You always make me realize how important crisp, fresh pictures are. So I would use the Flower Market stencil on the wall above my African violets. They are over 25 years old – where my mother’s so feel I am keeping a part of her. It is sort of a market as over the years I have given away clippings and plants to friends. The leaf in water to root really does work.

  70. That ladder is seriously the best thing I’ve ever seen! The stencils are pretty bomb too! I’m thinking of all the things I could do with them….

  71. I love that ladder! A family member gave me 2 6′ ladders at Easter so I could do this. The only thing is I wonder if it would fall if wind blows. And i think your flowers look like pansies not violets but Im no plant expdaert.

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