You’re designing your planters, trying to decide between aluminum and steel. How can you determine which one is more suitable for your project? Over at Deco Planters, this is probably the most frequently asked question.

Here’s an outline of the advantages of mild steel and aluminum, each with powder-coated finish applied, in a nutshell.


The Facts:

  • Aluminum is lighter and less dense than steel.
  • Steel is stronger and more solid.

The Application: To bring aluminum to a comparable level of strength, you need to use a greater amount of aluminum.

Practically speaking… The choice of metal really depends on how much strength is required, and will be based on your plans. Aluminum is a great choice for rooftop installation where weight is an issue. Steel is ideal when the planter design includes seating.


The Facts:

  • Steel rusts.
  • Aluminum does not.

The Application: Maintenance is required for steel planters.

Practically speaking… If a steel planter gets scratched to the bare metal, it needs to be corrected right away, otherwise it will rust, unlike aluminum where it would merely be an aesthetic decision to fix. Keep steel away from highly populated areas where it will be especially prone to scratches. Aluminum is great for coastal areas.


The Facts:

  • Aluminum is more expensive than steel.
  • Steel requires zinc-rich prime.

The Application: At the end of the day, the cost is in the same range.

Practically speaking… Though both aluminum and steel have their merits, aluminum is the default choice.


Some projects are specifically engineered to require the strength that steel provides:

  • SEATING: If seating is incorporated in the planter design
  • BARRIERS: When planters are used as wall barriers
  • LARGE STRUCTURES: Such as pergolas

For planters, it is generally logical to go for aluminum – particularly when avoiding corrosion is a priority, such as:

  • HEAVY TRAFFIC AREAS: Think store fronts, street sides, parks
  • HIGH CORROSION ENVIRONMENT: Like coastal areas
  • EXTREME LONGEVITY IS DESIRED: Then again, stainless steel might also be a good choice
  • INSTALLED AND FORGOTTEN: Because maintenance isn’t mandated…

We work with both metals. Speak to our team for help in determining the best fit for your project. View past steel projects and aluminum projects.