How to rustproof a metal planter

This blog post will answer the question, “how to rustproof a metal planter” and covers topics like different methods of removing rust from metal planters, how to keep metal planters from rust, and frequently asked questions related to the topic.

How to rustproof a metal planter?

To rustproof a metal planter use rust-resistant paint. Use a galvanized planter or add rust-resistant paint to keep metal planters from corrosion. The main cause of corrosion on the planter is moisture. So you can use waterproof insulation or an insulated inner pot to shield it from moisture.

How to remove rust from metal planter?

Rust can be removed from metal planter by following the steps given below:

  • Apply rust-resistant paint to the surface
  • Bring the planter inside
  • In the metal planter, use an inside pot
  • Apply a thin layer of waterproof sealant to the surface
  • Make the necessary corrections as quickly as feasible

I will now elaborate on the guidance given above.

Apply rust-resistant paint to the surface:

A simple method is to use corrosion-resistant paints to paint the metal planter. It must be applied well on both the inner and outside of the container. Even if there is only a little gap, the metal container will corrode from the inside out.

Steps of applying rust-resistant paint:

  • You can begin painting from the interior and work your way out to all edges of the container. 
  • Make sure the rims at the bottom and top are also covered.
  • Now you may paint the container on the outside, making sure to cover all edges. 
  • Allow 24 hours for the paint to dry.
  • Now, on the inside and outside of the container, apply the 2nd layer of paint. After that, wait another 24 hours for it to dry.
  • Your metal planter is now set to be filled with potting soil and planted. 
  • When adding the potting soil, I recommend lining the planter with a plastic bin liner. 
  • The toxins in the paint won’t go into the potting soil because of this bin liner.
Materials NeededTools Needed
Rust-resistant PaintPaint Brush

Here’s a top recommended rust-resistant paint:

Rust-Oleum 250702 Stops Rust Spray Paint, 12-Ounce, Gloss Pure White

Benefits of Rust-Oleum 250702 Stops Rust Spray Paint, 12-Ounce, Gloss Pure White:

  • The oil-based solution provides a long-lasting protective layer with exceptional rust resistance.
  • It sets in 3-4 hours and reaches up to 15 square feet.
  • Abrasion, aging, and scratch protection are all excellent.
  • Surfaces with a glossy coating have a new sheen.

Bring the planter inside:

As the water rises the metal and causes corrosion, metal planters begin to corrode. If you live in a rainy location, it could be a good idea to bring the planter inside. If the metal planter is heavy, you must place it on a moveable rack so that you can easily transfer it to the desired area. Another solution is to shield the metal planter from the weather by covering it with waterproof material.

In the metal planter, use an inside pot:

The most common cause of corrosion on your metal planter is water splashed on it while spraying the plant. The plant can be grown in a plastic pot that fits within the metal planter.

This keeps the dirt from coming into contact with the metal planter. When it’s time to water the plant, simply remove the pot from the planter. After you’ve finished watering, bring it back inside. This keeps the water away from the metal planter, reducing the risk of corrosion.

Apply a thin layer of waterproof sealant to the surface:

You can use a coating of waterproof foam to line the inside of the metal planter. Because the moisture will not touch the sides of the planter, it will be protected from corrosion. Make sure the waterproof foam is exclusively applied to the metal planter’s inner surfaces. The foam should not be placed on the bottom of the planter since it will obstruct the outflow openings.

Materials Needed
Water-proof sealant

Make the necessary corrections as quickly as feasible:

When a metal planter develops flaws, such as scraped paint, it is susceptible to corrosion. As soon as it detects any problems, you must address them. You’ll have to wash the planter and get rid of any corrosion that has formed. To keep the metal planter from deteriorating further, you’ll need to repaint the afflicted area.

It’s ideal if you can keep the planter in good shape after each planting season. Remove the plant as well as the potting soil. Wipe the container with soap water and a brush or towel. Make absolutely sure the planter is completely dry by wiping it off with a towel. 

If any parts of the box are commencing to rust, you’ll need to scratch them off with a good rust remover. After applying such a mixture, wipe the box again and allow it to dry. It’s now time to fill the container with potting soil and start developing a new plant.

Materials Needed
Soapy Water

Best rust-resistant metal planter:

A few of the best rust-resistant metal planters are listed below:

  • Use a planter with a powder-coated finish
  • Use a planter made of stainless steel
  • Use a planter made of galvanized metal

I will now elaborate on them one by one.

Use a planter with a powder-coated finish:

Powder coatings made of acrylics, polyester, polyamide, PVC, epoxy, and urethane can help prevent corrosion on metal. You might have to look hard for planters that look like stainless steel ones.

It’s better if you can find a standard metal planter and powder coat it yourself. Such chemicals should not be allowed to leak into the ground. As a result, I recommend utilizing a planter like this as a box to hold a plastic pot in which to cultivate your plants.

Use a planter made of stainless steel:

Stainless steel is a chrome-coated alloy with a minimum of 11% chromium content. This layer protects the metal from rusting. If you can find one, it will allow you to cultivate plants without having to worry about rusting. However, finding such a planter may be challenging, and you may need to have one custom-made.

Use a planter made of galvanized metal:

Using a galvanized metal planter is the simplest way to preserve your metal planters from corrosion. A zinc layer has been put to the galvanized planter’s outside surface. This zinc layer prevents the steel beneath from corrosion. 

It’s important not to scratch the zinc because this will allow corrosion to form. Zinc has the disadvantage of potentially leaching into the soil. And, particularly when producing fruits and vegetables, you don’t want such metals in the ground.

One alternative is to use the galvanized planter only as a cover, with a plastic container containing the plant within.

How to maintain a metal planter?

A metal planter is a long-lasting replacement to planters made of ceramic, plastics, and concrete. A metal planter, on the other hand, cannot be readily broken, unlike other planters. The accumulation of corrosion or tarnish, on the other hand, is an issue that must be handled. 

Planters made of copper or brass generally develop a patina that isn’t always appealing. Some folks, on the other hand, suggest leaving the tarnish on the planter’s surfaces. 

Planters made of steel or iron are vulnerable to corrosion and may require a layer to prevent oxidation. 

Here are some tips for keeping a metal planter in good shape:

  • Clean the Planter Made of Metal
  • Give time for the metal planter to dry out
  • The planter should be painted
  • Plants can be grown in a variety of containers
  • Do not water the planters directly
  • Maintain a consistent cleaning schedule

I will now elaborate on the guidance given above.

Clean the Planter Made of Metal:

The easiest way to keep a metal planter in good shape is to cover it with a protective layer that will prevent corrosion and tarnish build-up. Asphalt paint is the ideal covering for a metal planter.

If feasible, remove the contents of the metal planter before coating it. Wipe the area with hot water and a brush or towel.

Materials Needed
Asphalt paint
Warm water
Brush or towel

Give time for the metal planter to dry out:

Clean the metal planter’s surfaces with terry cloth and let it dry, ideally in the sunlight. Prepare the ingredients for the painting task while the metal planter is drying.

The planter should be painted:

Steps of painting a planter:

  • Paint the planter’s surfaces with a brush. 
  • Allow enough time for the paint to cure after applying it. 
  • Add a second coat once the first has dried and leave to dry. 
  • Put the plant back into the planter after completing the painting process.
Materials Needed

Plants can be grown in a variety of containers:

It’s important to put the plant in a container first before putting it inside the metal planter to keep the interior clean. Do not put soil immediately within the planter as soil and water can damage the inside, particularly if the planter is constructed of cast iron.

Do not water the planters directly:

When watering the plants, never do it while the potted plant is still inside the planter. Take the potted plant firstly, then continue watering. Permit the water to evaporate before reintroducing it to the planter.

Maintain a consistent cleaning schedule:

Steps of cleaning a metal planter:

  • Make careful to wipe the planter’s surfaces with soap and warm water once a month, or every two weeks. 
  • Scrub the surface with a towel or a brush with a cleaning brush after removing the potted plant from the planter. 
  • An abrasive should never be used since it can damage the paint. 
  • To gently remove the paint, never use too much force when rubbing on the surfaces. 
  • Patina can be eliminated by soaking a rag or cotton fabric in vinegar and rubbing it on the metal surfaces till the tarnish is gone.
Materials Needed
Warm Water
Cleaning Brush 
Cotton Fabric

Frequently Asked Questions:(FAQs) “How to rustproof a metal planter?”

How do you insulate metal planters?

  • Metal containers should only be used in shaded areas since they minimize heat and prevent sunlight, which can be harmful to plants. 
  • Alternatively, use plastic wrap to protect the dirt and stems from the molten iron in your metal containers. 
  • However, in really hot regions, the metal may become hot enough to melt the plastic wrap.

How do you remove rust from metal pots?

  • Make a sticky dough using baking soda, water, or hydrogen peroxide (for hard corrosion). 
  • Put the acid-based mixture to the rusted metal surface with a microfiber towel or wipe and allow it there for 15-20 minutes. 
  • Scrape the surface with an abrasive until all rusted particles have been eliminated.

Should I line a metal planter with plastic?

Putting a plastic pot within a metal pot acts as an efficient liner, protecting bases from scorching. The University of Illinois Extension suggests using a plastic container with a drain pipe at the base to permit surplus moisture to pass for optimal outcomes.

How do you line a wrought iron planter?

Putting the finishing touches on your wrought iron window box Stabilize the base with cloth, then cover with a bin bag. Fill halfway with mud, fix liners, add plants, and adjust soil as needed. To make the frame, fold both linings together and zip tie them together. In the edges, I used more than in the front.

Should I insulate planters?

In warmer areas, maintaining the soil warm throughout brief winter storms is sufficient to safeguard borderline plants and assure their sustained vitality. 

If the roots of some plants become too heated, they may wilt and expire, thus pot insulation may help keep the soil cold while also protecting them from freezing.

Do you need to drill holes in metal planters?

You’ll need to drill holes in the bottom of your galvanized containers to ensure that the vegetables you’ll be planting have enough drainage. Drill openings every few inches around the outside of the troughs, as well as horizontally and laterally, with a 1/2″ metal drill bit.


Leave a Comment