Aldi rolls out an array of gardening supplies every spring, from raised beds to greenhouses to plant stands and a host of accessories and tools. As we get into June and the summer months, the gardening bug eases up a bit at the discount grocery store, but we still see a trickle of products for aspiring green thumbs. One item that recently caught my eye was the Gardenline Lattice Planter.
The Gardenline Lattice Planter cost $16.99 at the time of publication. It’s an Aldi Find, which means it’s only in stores for a short time. The majority of Aldi Finds return to store shelves for a brief period once a year around the same time each year. I’m not sure I’ve seen anything like this lattice planter at Aldi before, so this may be a new product the store is trying out among its gardening selection.
The lattice planters were available in silver gray or in a darker, almost-black color. I opted for the silver gray one. The pot is lightweight plastic and requires no tools for assembly. The pot and attached saucer are just over 16.5 inches in diameter, and the pot and saucer alone are about 12 inches tall. When fully assembled, my planter is pretty tall, standing around 51.5 inches tall. The planter is made in China.
Assembly was easy, and an instruction manual is tucked inside the pot once you break open the outer layer of plastic wrap. I had to pop the pot out of the drainage tray (it snaps on to a few peg-like pieces in the tray) to remove the bottom layer of lattice that was wrapped around the outside of the pot. Then I popped the pot back into the drain tray. Before adding the lattice, I poured potting soil into the pot and added a tomato plant. You will want to add soil and plants before adding the lattice. Otherwise, your work is going to be much harder.
From there it was a simple matter of snapping the largest lattice piece into the top of the pot and then adding the successively smaller lattice pieces to form a tower. In all, there are four sections of lattice that fasten on in order of biggest on the bottom to smallest on the top.
With some fiddling, I was able to snap the bottom lattice pieces out of the pot, so it shouldn’t be too hard to remove the lattice when I want to clean out the pot and replant next year.
The lattice sections are made of a flexible plastic, but when the whole thing is assembled, it feels like it should be sturdy enough to support a sprawling tomato plant. The manual suggests that ribbon or soft twine can also be used to help secure vines in place.
The planter does not come with a warranty, but the manual does have a phone number for after sales support: 1-866-231-8993. That appears to be a number for CTM International, which sells holiday decorations, lawn and garden products, and hardware at a variety of retailers including Costco, Walmart, Sam’s Club, ACE Hardware, Lowe’s, Menards, and Rural King. The company provided warranty service for some planters and lanterns Aldi sold a few years ago.
Based on the photo in Aldi’s ad, this planter looked like potentially a great way to grow smaller-fruited tomato varieties such as cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes. I opted to plant a shimmer tomato plant in my pot. It produces fruit larger than cherry tomatoes but smaller than Roma tomatoes. I wouldn’t want to grow a tomato variety that produces extremely large fruit in this because it might be difficult to pick the ripe tomatoes through the latticework. Anything about the size of a plum tomato or Roma tomato or smaller seems like it should be fine, though. We’ll see how things go as the growing season progresses.
Other plants that might work well in this lattice planter include any kind of vine such as clematis, morning glory, small cucumbers, beans, or peas. I could also see taller plants like sunflowers growing well in this pot because the lattice would provide support for the stalks, since I sometimes have to stake or tie my sunflowers to keep them from leaning too much.
As an added bonus, while the holes in the lattice are not small enough to keep out all animals, they may help deter some. Squirrels are a particular problem in my neighborhood with plenty of mature trees that make good homes for them, plus a few neighbors who encourage them by leaving corn out. I’m hopeful the lattice planter will encourage most of the local squirrels to dig elsewhere.
One minor issue is that the drainage saucer fills with a lot of standing water if I really soak my plant in here, but I can carefully tilt the planter to pour some of that water out.
As for how the planter looks on my patio, one of my kids says it looks like a mini Eiffel Tower. I think it adds a nice element of class and style, and placing several of these on a patio would make a striking design statement, especially as the plants fill in around the latticework. I’m looking forward to watching my tomato plant fill in the space as the summer progresses, and I like the look of this planter enough that I would consider buying more.
The Gardenline Lattice Planter features a pot with latticework to support trailing plants or vines such as tomatoes, beans, peas, small cucumbers, morning glories, or tall plants that could use some support. It has a drainage hole and looks nice on our patio, and I’m eager to watch my tomato plant grow in it this summer.