Follow our simple steps below to create the perfect steel trough planter…

1. Decide on the placement of your steel trough. Do you have a spot in the garden which needs brightening up, or do you want a planter for all to see and enjoy? Determining the ideal spot for your steel planter also depends on the plants you will be adding to it, some may need a spot that gets a lot of sunlight, others may need shade and protection from the wind.

2. Once you decide on the placement of your trough planter, you may need to work out the placement area size to get the perfect fit. At McVeigh Parker, we stock Standard, Large, and Extra Large planters, these range from 0.6 metres (2ft) to 3 metres (10ft) in length. Another thing to consider is whether to use our concrete trough support, these add height and mark a smaller area of the ground.  

3. To ensure the trough planter has sufficient drainage, place a 5-10cm (2-4 inch) layer of gravel evenly across the bottom of the water trough.

4. On top of the gravel, place a piece of textile membrane along the trough. This will keep the soil in place and prevent it from washing away under the gravel when watered.

5. Cover with your preferred compost. We used a general multi-purpose compost mixed with fertiliser for added growing power.

6. When considering plants for your planter, try to take in to account the changing seasons and select plants for the back, middle, front and sides of the plant.

It was late spring/early summer when we planted ours and we opted for gladioli bulbs for the back, a mix of hardy perennials including aucuba ‘Golden Girl’ and escallonia ‘Golden Ellen’ for the middle mixed with bright favourites such as Scabiosa.

We also added some beautiful smelling rosemary and lavender to further excite the senses! For the front and sides, we planted a mix of trailing petunias and geraniums, alongside some ivy for interest. For the front top, we opted for upright petunias which will spread and offer a pleasing veil of colour.

7. Place your plants on top of the soil and arrange until you are happy with the display, then cover them with soil and water.

8. Enjoy!

Need a water trough to suit your garden? Browse our variety of steel water planters or contact us. We'll be more than happy to help!