Planter Umbrella Stand




We recently bought a huge umbrella from Ikea for our deck. But the pole is larger than normal (almost 2"), and normal umbrella stands are too small for the umbrella. Since I had a hard time finding one, I decided to build my own.


Step 1: Materials

This stand is made from:

1 oak 1/2 barrel ($40)

1 2" PVC pipe & fittings ($12)

2 80 lb bags of concrete ($10)

potting soil & plants ($20-25)

paving bricks (optional) ($3)

Step 2: Assembly - 1

The pipe assembly is composed of a toilet flange, a 3" to 2" reducer, and a 2" PVC pipe.

I used a straight edge a little smaller than the diameter of the bottom of the barrel to mark lines. This let me estimate the center of the barrel. I then screwed the flange down in the center, and glued the other pieces together.

Step 3: Assembly - 2

I wasn't sure how much concrete I would need. I bought four bags, but ended up using two.

I didn't have a large container to mix the concrete in except for the barrel itself, so I decided to mix the concrete in the barrel. If I were going to do this again, I would definitely mix the concrete elsewhere, and pour it in.

I used a mixer paddle on a drill. That got the concrete partly mixed, until my drill overheated. I ended up using my hands and a small garden spade to finish mixing the concrete.

Step 4: Assembly - 3

After waiting for 24 hours for the concrete to set, we put the garden in.

I missed one step here. I had planned on drilling some holes at the edge of the concrete to help the soil drain. Since I forgot, we'll see how it goes, and if necessary I'll add them later.

This is pretty typical: potting soil and plants. My wife had the great idea to put in a couple of bricks to give a place to set your drink when sitting next to it.

Step 5: Final Tweaks and Finished Product

After the plants went in, it was obvious the PVC pipe was longer than necessary. So I cut off about 6" off the top, and used a bit of sandpaper to remove the printing on the pipe.

I also used a 1 1/2" to 2" flexible coupler to help hold to umbrella in place.



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    10 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Where do you buy the flexible coupler and how does it work? Does it tighten with a screwdriver? I've never made anything with PVC piping before so I'm totally new at this but I wanted to make my own base and have it be able to tighten to secure the umbrella just like the store-bought kind do. Thanks!

    2 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    Oh, almost missed part of the question.

    It's basically a double hose clamp, so it takes a socket on either end to tighten.


    Reply 2 years ago

    I got the coupler at Home Depot, in the plumbing section. It's for joining two pieces of pipe together.

    Good luck with your project!


    2 years ago

    How much does the barrel weigh now that it has cement/soil/etc in it? Are you able to move it? Has the wood of the barrel started deteriorating with the weather? Because I have barrels, but they're old and have started deteriorating. Thanks for the great pictures too!

    1 reply

    Reply 2 years ago

    Good questions!

    I'm not sure how much the barrel weighs now, but it's heavy enough not to tip even with that huge umbrella. It is movable; I just push on one side at a time, and shift it from one place to another.

    So far the wood has held up, and we're still using/enjoying it. I think the char helps. I have no idea how long it'll last, but I figure that when it finally gives up the ghost, I'll get another barrel and (carefully!) transfer the concrete mass to the new barrel.


    Reply 3 years ago

    Yup. All I have to do is to loosen the collar between the base and the stand.


    I'm glad you like it!

    And I'm happy to say that a year later, it still looks good and is holding up fine.


    4 years ago

    very cool!