Material: Driftwood – 5 Great Garden Uses

It’s summer holiday season and everyone is heading to the shore.  Long walks and beach combing often turn up treasured souvenirs of a great vacation that can also be used in a variety of ways in garden projects.

Driftwood, with it’s beautiful patina and quirky shapes and sizes is beautiful on its own or as the base material for creating outdoor garden features.

And as a little side note…I find I have to explain this to people all the time…do you know that the natural patina on wood is often just as good of a protective coating as any chemical, oil, or other wise that you can spend a lot of  time and money applying?  When working with woods that have a natural rot and water resistance (ipe, cedar, black locust, etc) it is really just an aesthetic preference to put a sealant on the wood.  If you can live with silvering (which looks amazing next to plants) you can save yourself alot of time and money and enviroment alot of needless chemicals.

Back to beautiful driftwood….

Garden Use #1- Anchor Water Plants

Use driftwood at the bottom of your pond or water feature to attach water cleaning plants. Full details of plants and how to accomplish this little project are available at Aquascaping World.

driftwood for water garden plants

Garden Use #2 – Sculpture

Softened by the moving water and beached by the sun and element, a unique piece of driftwood can make a beautiful sculptural statement.

driftwood garden sculpture

Images from  Design Home Accessories and House and Home Ireland.

Garden Use #3

If you live near the water and can collect many larger pieces easily, consider using it to make a fence or another garden structure like an arbor.

garden structure from driftwood arbor pergola

Top image from Mull Gardens and Bottom from Arbor Rental.

Garden Use #4

Pay attention while on the beach to also collect beautiful shells or beach glass and make a windchime from your treasures.  Here is a good link to guide you on making your own.

DIY driftwood chimes and wall art

The Blue and white chime is from Aurabali Craft and The beautiful brown and white version is available to buy from BayBeachScapes on Etsy. The heart is a beautiful handmade gift made by the talented Cavania.

Garden Use #5 Get imaginative!

I am convinced that I could make a beautiful version of this light feature myself with some outdoor lights or even candles.  I would use it to dress the center of my long picnic table for a breezy summer dinner.
driftwood light fixture inspiraton for garden light

Image from Trianon

and Finally….Isn’t this sculpture inspiring….Do you know where it is?  I will answer in my next post…..


image from Swiss-Miss.

Oh- and one more little side note….before you start collecting, make sure it is legal to do so and that

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rochelle greayer

Hi, I'm Rochelle and for 18 years I have worked as a landscape designer, author/writer, and design teacher. I've designed residential and hospitality (for hotels, restaurants, and spas) gardens across the USA and in the UK, Europe and the Middle East. After many years of teaching garden design topics in person, I launched the PITH + VIGOR Boot Camp series in early 2018. Through my blog, social media, and online courses (Garden Design Bootcamp and Planting Design Boot Camp) I aim to help homeowners learn how to confidently design and create home gardens that reflect their own personal and unique style.


  1. margie lou on September 25, 2009 at 3:19 am

    it is very interesting and i admire it so much…….dey very creative

  2. Bonnie Cooke on March 23, 2010 at 5:38 pm

    I lovw your light feature for the garden. How much would it cost to buy one?

  3. Tracey Ingebretsen on February 27, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    Incredible Driftwood lighting- are they for sale please let me know . Iam an interior Designer and would love some one of a kind pieces. Thank you–Tracey Ingebretsen

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