Garden & Lawn

Top 5 Best Outdoor Herb Planters and UK Buyers Guide

Last updated on June 7th, 2021

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Fresh herbs have more value to us other than making our food delicious. Fresh herbs are a good source of anti-inflammatory elements and other nutrients that boost our immunity. Having your herb garden close by ensures that you get fresh herbs that taste great. You can even set up the planter near the kitchen window so that you can grab the herbs easily.

If you don’t have much space in your garden or no beds at all, having a planter is a good way of growing your herbs without taking much space. There are so many planters available that you might not be sure as to which is the best herb planter for you, especially with so many cheaply made models available. To help you choose the right herb planter, we have assembled this review with durable planters that are worth every penny in their own way. Feel free to peruse through the product review and buying guide presented herein because we are confident that this information will be useful as you navigate the market. What we really like about a lot of herb planters is they are raised off the ground which makes them easier to work with, especially for the elderly or those in wheelchairs.

First, let us peek at our top picks that includes the VegTrug 8 Pocket Herb Planter and the Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter. The VegTrug 8 Pocket Herb Planter is our best pick because it is sizeable, well sectioned to grow different herbs, as well as robust. Its simply and excellent piece of kit, very well made. The Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter is our second best due to its affordable price and it has an attractive design, and again features a lot of raised sections.

Find out more about these planters and many more in the detailed reviews below:

BEST PICK

VegTrug 8 Pocket Herb Planter
The VegTrug 8 Pocket Herb Planter is a premium product with an understated but efficient design. It offers eight slots for growing different herbs and it is deep enough to promote proper root growth. The popular planter features a decent height at around 80cm and it is easy to set up, although much easier with a second pair of hands to help. It does not come cheap but considering the craftsmanship and build quality, it is a good bargain. This model would be a good fit for those looking for a raised good-sized hern planter that is designed to last and don't mind paying a little extra for quality.

Runner-up

Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter
The Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter is our budget-friendly option. This small model is made from pressure-treated wood, Class (UC) level 3 to be exact and it fits into tight spaces well. Those tied down for space can consider this option for balcony or patio use. With six tiers, planting a variety of herbs will be easy. Many of the customers found this planter to be more than sufficient. Overall it stands at just over 3ft tall by around 1ft wide. Overall this model offers excellent value for money and is well made.

Top 5 Herb Planter Reviews

1. VegTrug 8 Pocket Herb Planter

BEST PICK

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VegTrug 8 Pocket Herb Planter

Starting us off is the VegTrug 8 Pocket herb Planter that comes with eight spaces to grow your herbs. The sectioned model is ideal for growing different herbs for your kitchen and its height is easily accessible for users with back injuries, the elderly, those using wheelchairs or those who simply want a raised herb planter. There is no need to kneel or bend, which can cause unnecessary strain to the body. We also like that there is a bottom shelf where you can store your gardening tools or the watering can nearby, or maybe put a couple of planters on there.

The grey planter has a subtle elegance so it will look good whether you place it in the balcony or the patio. Although it comes flat packed, the cedar wood planter is easy to assemble, however, its best built with a second pair of hands although its still possible for one person too. Instructions are nice and clear, easy to follow but make sure you follow them to a tee.

We also like that it has a liner so the wood and the soil will not be in contact, also helps keeps them tidy. The planter comes pre-treated, thus you can use it as soon as you assemble with no painting needed. When assembled the planter measures around 80cm tall by around 78cm wide and 58cm deep.

In term of planting space, each of the square boxes are around 18cm deep, by about 26cm tall and 20cm wide, plenty of space for herbs to grow.

Pros

  • Made from durable cedar wood.
  • Easy to assemble and sturdy (much easier with 2 people).
  • Features a bottom shelf for additional storage.
  • Easy accessible by the elderly and those in wheelchairs thanks to the 80cm height.

Cons

  • It is fairly expensive but worth the price.

Our recommendation

The VegTrug 8 Pocket herb Planter is ideal if you are looking for a sizeable rustic model that’s is raised off the ground at a good working height. As mentioned, the grey-coloured planter has a great height, which is convenient for those who do not want to bend, this makes it a great choice for the elderly.

It is easy to assemble although we recommend getting another person to help so they can hold the process together while you screw them together. If you do not want the partitions, you can also leave them out during assembly although we don’t think they mention this on the instructions.

Admittedly, the planter is a bit expensive but the quality is great. It is robust hence; you will get value for your money over the years as you continue to make use of it. Overall we think this is a great choice and worthy of being named our Best Pick.

Read next: Best raised bed kits for planting herbs and vegetables


2. Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter

Runner-up

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Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter

Next, we have the Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter made from robust and durable and what Beanwood describe as professional timber. What they mean is that its made from wood that has been pressure treated to Class (UC) level 3 which is for outdoor timber but above ground. So quality treated timber to prevent rot.

The wooden structure comprises of six tiers to hold herbs or flowers depending on your preference. There are gaps between the tiers to facilitate drainage and avoid root rot which is a nice design, saves you having to drill drainage holes.

At around 6kg when empty, its fairly lightweight, lighter than you might expect. In terms, if design, the planter has an A-frame design so all the plants receive enough sunlight. It is very stable thanks to its leg bracing design and so it cannot be knocked over easily, were thinking pets and children.

The question most people ask is if its difficult to build, most will find its actually easy to assemble in four easy steps, and you can place it in the balcony, patio or wherever else you please. Finally, in terms of size, it stands at ever so slightly over 90cm (3ft) and around 30cm (1ft) and 60cm (2ft) deep. Not a bad size but it does maybe look a little larger on the pictures than it actually is.

Pros

  • Compact design with 6 tiers making it ideal for small spaces.
  • Easy to assemble.
  • Made from robust pressure treated timber to protect it against rot.
  • Features adequate drainage to prevent root rot.
  • Easily accessible to users of different heights.

Cons

  • It does not have a liner.
  • Perhaps a little smaller than expected.

Our recommendation

The Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter is much more cost-friendly compared to our best pick so it’s a good alternative for anyone looking for a more affordable model, assuming you like the design of course.

It is suitable for those who want a planter that can also be a decorative structure in the garden. Its A-frame design allows easy access to all the herbs or whatever else you choose to plant in it.

We would also recommend this model for those who need a small planter to accommodate small herbs and plants because of its size. Overall we think it’s a great choice for those with limited space, in terms of floor space it only takes up 30cm x 60cm.

Read next: Best wooden planters for herbs and vegetables


3. VegTrug Medium Raised Bed Planter

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VegTrug Medium Raised Bed Planter

Introducing the VegTrug Medium Raised Bed Planter made from fir that’s fetched from sustainable sources, overall its a good start for this raised planter. This model offers a large capacity that will take seven 60-litre bags of compost. For this, we actually recommend mixing 50% multi-purpose and 50% farm manure. This is more than enough room to plant various herbs and vegetables.

Measuring 183 x 76 x 80cm which is a very generous 6ft long, the v-shaped planter offers a comfortable working height of around 80cm, therefore, you do not have to keep bending or kneeling which is excellent for those who are not as young as they once were like me. What we actually recommend is planting deep-rooted plants such as carrots in teh centre above the deepest part and planting shallower rooted plants around the edges with is most herbs.

We like that you do not have to buy a liner because the planter comes with one, so that saves you a job. In terms of drainage, all the excess water is drained through the slated boards beneath.

The bad news, or at least for some is the planter arrives flat packed with assembly instructions in tow, its not too difficult to build and the instructions should be clear enough. It is easy to assemble, which makes it convenient for those of us who are not handy.

The planter can be placed on the balcony, patio but what we like to the attention to detail with parts like the outfitted rubber feet that protect the surface where it sits on but also, more importantly, stops the feet from rotting.

Pros

  • Large 6ft wide planter provides lots of growing space.
  • Made of durable pressure-treated fir, designed to last.
  • Features a V-design to promote deep and healthy roots.
  • It offers a comfortable height to work with at around 80cm tall.
  • Easy to assemble (two pairs of hands is better).
  • Provides a large capacity (420 litres in total).

Cons

  • The wood splinters easily.

Our recommendation

For those who need a large planter, we are talking 6ft wide, the VegTrug Medium Raised Bed Planter is a good choice. It has a large capacity of over 400L in addition to a comfortable working height for those who have knee or back problems.

For the most part, this planter is easy to assemble. However, it is made of softwood, making it prone to damage so just something to watch out for. It is also important to read instructions before assembly. Apart from that, the planter works perfectly fine. With some good maintenance, it is bound to be home to various herbs, fruits and vegetables for a relatively long time.

It’s worth noting you can also get accessories such as a polytunnel, netted or fleece to extend the growing season and protect your herbs from pests.

Read next: Best trough planters


4. Gardenesque Ceramic Tiered Herb Planter

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Gardenesque Ceramic Tiered Herb Planter

The Gardenesque Ceramic Tiered Herb Planter is another planter that’s just the right size for growing herbs on your balcony but its much smaller than you might think. The ceramic planter only measures about 27cm in height so it is pretty compact. It has several openings where you can plant different herbs on a small scale. When it rains, there are drainage holes to get rid of the excess water and compost can be used freely without the fear of rotting wood. 

Place this small-sized model anywhere as long as the plants get some sun. It comes in grey smoke or green so choose according to your preference. Better still, no assembly is required, it’s good to go right off the box.

Pros

  • Durable ceramic planter, ideal for planting small herbs.
  • Needs no assembly.
  • Offers different openings to house different herbs.
  • It is affordable.

Cons

  • Smaller than expected, make sure you understand the measurements before ordering.

Our recommendation

If you need a super small planter, then you can’t go wrong with the Gardenesque Ceramic Tiered Herb Planter. This small ceramic planter would do well for herbs like sage, chives, basil and thyme.

It has a small footprint making it convenient for those with little space to spare. To make matters better, it is affordable and strong, giving good value for money. It comes ready to use and requires no maintenance. Just make sure you understand the dimensions as its compact at 27cm (10.5 inches) tall.

Read next: Best wheelbarrow planters for growing herbs


5. CutnCraft Designs Medium 3 Tiered Garden Steps Trough herb Box

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CutnCraft Designs Medium 3 Tiered Garden Steps Trough herb Box

Made in the UK, the CutnCraft Designs 3 Tiered Garden Steps herb Box is made from treated wood for longevity, it’s actually pressure treated decking so you know the quality of the materials will be good.

Since its made from pressure treated timber, it comes with a 15-year guarantee against rot. The design we look at takes the shape of steps with three tiers and each tier has adequate space to hold several plants. This planter is raised from the ground to allow proper drainage of water through the pre-drilled drainage holes. 

You can choose to leave the drainage holes and the feet if you do not need them, just need to let them know before ordering but if your using it to plant, we highly recommend having the drainage holes.

We do like that the planter does not require assembly, it comes ready for use, overall it measures 88cm wide x 30cm deep by around 40cm tall. It worth noting that they also do lots of other designs and sizes if you want something different but like the materials and craftsmanship.

Pros

  • Robust planter made from FSC certified treated decking.
  • Offers adequate capacity to hold many herbs.
  • Arrives already assembled.
  • Stable and raised from the ground.
  • Timber is guaranteed for 15 years.

Our recommendation

The CutnCraft Designs 3 Tiered Garden Steps herb Box is a premium-priced planter that you can place in the garden or patio. It is not as pricey as our best pick but it boasts of a robust build and because the wood is treated, you can expect to use the planter for many years.

Overall, we find it suitable for those who need an already assembled wooden planter with a sizeable capacity, but also one that will withstand the test of time. Don’t forget they also have lots of other designs to choose from if you like the idea of a planter made from decking but need a planter that is perhaps a little larger or just a trough design.


Buyer’s Guide

Planters teeming with life are always a remarkable sight, especially when there homegrown herbs and vegetables. You probably already have an idea of what herbs you want to plant. Now it is time to select the best outdoor herb planter for your garden.

Before you settle for a planter, get acquainted with some of the things you need to remember to make shopping for one a breeze. First things first, let us look at why planters are a good idea:

Benefits of herb planters

  • Herb planters are great for first-time gardeners because they create a controlled environment which included choosing a good quality compost. Unlike in beds and borders where you might need to amend the soil, improve drainage, add more fertiliser.
  • They are great if you want fresh herbs but you do not have a garden or you are tied down for space.
  • Planters can be decorative depending on their placement and design. You can select different colours to match your garden theme.
  • They are perfect for seasonal planting as they are easily stored when they are not in use.
  • Planters provide proper drainage for areas where water tends to pool at the surface such as badly draining borders.
  • Many people find them less strenuous than consistently tilling beds and borders. For those with injuries, this is convenient as you can also work at a better working height, even if in a wheelchair or you can kneel down at ground level.
  • Planters can help you prevent pests and other bugs that infest the soil at different times of the year. Some planters such as the VegTrug even have optional covers you can buy to protect them from pests.
old Herb planter boxes

Factors to consider when shopping for herb planters

Quality of the material

A strong planter will last for years. Whether the planter is made from wood, metal or ceramic, the quality of the materials must be durable and robust.

Resilience from the elements

The elements can be tough on outdoor products, therefore, your planter must possess the ability to withstand the elements. If purchasing wood planters, always look if the planter is made from pressure treated timber to protect it from rot. We also recommend giving it a coat of paint once a year too.

Ceramic planters do not have any issues when it comes to weather protection as long as there frost proof. Metallic planters, on the other hand, should be made of powder-coated metal to protect against rust and wear. This way they can survive the outdoors and maintain their appearance.

best Wooden Herb Planter

Style and design

Just because you are buying an outdoor planter doesn’t mean that it has to look unsightly. A planter can be a decorative piece, especially when teeming with plant life. Look for a planter with the style and design that fits into your décor. There are so many colours and interesting designs out there for your selection, have some fun with it.

Size of the planter

Rasied herb planter, ideal for working off the ground

How many herbs are you planning to have? Do you want a small planter or a large one? When you figure out how many plants you want, you can select a suitable size. Be sure to consider the size of the space where the planter will be seating. You do not want to buy a large planter only to find out its bigger than you maybe thought. This also applies to smaller planters, do check the dimensions as many are smaller than they might look on pictures. A common comment we see is “it’s much smaller than I thought it would be”. Don’t be that person.

Does the planter have sections?

Some people prefer planters that are partitioned so that they can grow in individual spaces. Some prefer planters without sections because they want the freedom to plant when and however they want. Figure out what type of arrangement would suit your plant system best and set it up. 

There are models in the market that give you the option to include the space dividers or exclude them during assembly. These types of planters are convenient for seasonal planting where the variety of plants may change.

Drainage

Planters need drainage to get rid of excess water. Without proper drainage, the roots may rot and if it is a wooden planter, it will also rot over time. Some models do not come with drainage hence you will drill holes where needed. Make sure that the planter you purchase sits above the ground slightly to allow the proper drainage of excess water.

A selection of the best herb planters

Lining

When using compost, a lining is important because it prevents water from soaking into the wood and causing rot over time. Not all planters come with a liner, if they don’t we recommend just using old compost bags but make sure you make holes in it so the water can drain away at the bottom.

Working height

Everybody has a preferred working position while gardening. For those of us who are young and healthy, bending or kneeling is not a problem. However, for the elderly, those in wheelchairs or those who are injured, having to bend down can be the difference between getting out in the garden and growing fresh herbs and not doing. If you find bending tasking, look for a planter whose height is suitable for you. Almost all products provide product measurements, so it should be easy to pick an appropriate height. Our best pick and the VegTrug are both great options for those who need a planter that high up.

Ease of assembly

Planters delivered with unclear instructions make assembly a difficult task. It is recommended for manufacturers to give clear assembly instructions in different languages for their customers. All the models we feature in this review include clear instructions.

Because some planters come flat packed, make sure you have the right tools, most just need a simple screwdriver to put together or allen key, sometimes even included. For those of us who do not particularly like assembly, some planters arrive already assembled.


Conclusion 

Shopping for planters should not be a boring affair simply because they are simple products. There are many designs in the market that will catch your attention at an affordable price.

We hope you have an idea of which model is the best outdoor planter for your herbs. If you have not, you still have time to choose between our Best Pick and Runner-up planters.

Just for a quick summary, our top pick is the VegTrug 8 Pocket Herb Planter whose robustness provides good value for money. The wooden planter is convenient for use as both the elderly and the young can use it comfortably. 

VegTrug 8 Pocket herb Planter
The VegTrug 8 Pocket herb Planter is a premium product with an understated but efficient design. It offers eight slots for growing different herbs and it is deep enough to promote proper root growth. The popular planter features a decent height and it is easy to set up. It does not come cheap but considering the service that you will get out of it, it is a good bargain. This model would be a good fit for those looking for a long-term outdoor planter whose appearance will not change drastically with the seasons.

The Beanwood Wooden Herb Planter, which is smaller and more affordable than the VegTrug model, is another one that we highly recommend. This tiered planter can house several herbs comfortably and it is sturdy in the wind.

With that said, it is time to bid you farewell, let us know which model worked out for you in the comment section below.


Last update on 2021-09-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Welcome to my site, my name is John and I have been lucky enough to work in horticultural nurseries for over 15 years in the UK. As the founder and editor as well as researcher, I have a City & Guilds Horticultural Qualifications which I proudly display on our About us page. I now work full time on this website where I review the very best gardening products and tools and write reliable gardening guides. Behind this site is an actual real person who has worked and has experience with the types of products we review as well as years of knowledge on the topics we cover from actual experience. You can reach out to me at john@pyracantha.co.uk

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