Easy DIY Fall Leaves Potted Topiary Tree From a Tomato Cage

Now that it's September, fall decorating is in full swing at my house. I've been brainstorming on how to use 2 urn planters for some sort of fall decoration on the cheap and these tomato cage fall topiary trees were just too easy (and pretty) to not add to my autumn decor!

Fall Leaves Tree Supplies:

  • Tomato cage (or 2)
  • Fake fall leaves garland (enough to cover your tomato cage)
  • Urn planter (or 2)
  • Clear Christmas lights

First I brought in 2 tomato cages from outside. I set the cages on the urn planters and noticed they were super tall and the bottom hoop was a little too large and slid past the lip of the urn. I immediately came up with an easy fix. I knew these tomato cages weren't the highest quality because a couple of the hoops had come off just from me pushing them in the ground. I brought in one that had a missing hoop. For the other cage I simply set it on the floor and stepped on it and pulled on the top and the hoop popped right off :). I then bent the bottom spokes in to rest on the planters because they were so tall that I would have had to spend a small fortune on fake leaves to cover them sufficiently. I also bent the spokes together at the top to help create a tree shape.

After all the bending and breaking I set the tomato cages on the urns to see how they would work. They did indeed resemble topiary trees which was the look I was going for.

I then gathered up some fall fake leaves garland. This was the only part of the project that I didn't have on hand. I have a ton of fake leaves garland, just none to spare for my the sake of my new decoration. So I splurged a little and bought 12 sets at Walmart for $36. Totally more than I wanted to spend but I figured if I didn't use them all I could return them and I really wanted to have full leaf coverage on my trees.

I then started wrapping the garland around the tomato cage.

This is how it looked after wrapping one garland. I tucked the ends in so the leaves would not unravel.

When I was finally done wrapping and tucking both trees I trudged on down to the basement and stole a couple of strands of clear lights from the Christmas lights tote, grabbed my assistant for encouragement and snacks, (all this wrapping was making us hungry) and started winding lights around my leafy trees.

After I was done winding lights I decided to tuck them under the leaves to create a softer look and to hide the wires.

Here's a picture of one of the finished trees.

Since I had most of the supplies I ended up spending less than $20 a tree. I could have spent even less but I didn't want any open space in my trees.

I just love how they turned out! They have created a wonderful, warm autumn atmosphere in my home :). Hope this has inspired you all to get to your fall decorating!! To see more pictures of the finished trees or for a full tutorial check out my blog post :)!

Thrifty Artsy Girl
Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

  9 questions
  • Denise Pittman Denise Pittman on Aug 13, 2016
    I did a Fall tree last year using a tomato cage and it turned out beautiful. I have 2 urns that I want to do something with. How did you get the tomato cage to rest securely on top of your urns?

    • Jennifer Clark Crabtree Jennifer Clark Crabtree on Aug 25, 2016
      Hi Denise, just a quick shout, not many people from Spruce Pine, NC, I was just there last month!...my father's family is from Avery County

    • Denise Pittman Denise Pittman on Aug 25, 2016
      Hi Jennifer, what a small world. I actually live in Avery County close to the Mitchell County line. Don't know why but my address has always been Spruce Pine. I graduated from Avery High and the guy I dated in high school was a Clark.

    • Cherie Aldridge Vickers Cherie Aldridge Vickers on Aug 27, 2016
      Love this. Gonna try it. Thanks!

    • Thrifty Artsy Girl Thrifty Artsy Girl on Aug 28, 2016
      I bent the bottom pieces so that they rested on the urns. The trees are very lightweight so they sit there perfect, and you can adjust them as needed :)

    • I have two concrete urns that have hostas planted in them; they stand next to our garage doors. MANY years ago I made Christmas trees with tomato cages. I keep them atop the urns; they sit perfectly on the urns.. I push four stakes into the soil just inside the urn top. I also push an old broom handle in the center, put the tomato cage tree down over it , for more support. I added lights and sparkly wire type garlands in red .

    • Belinda Cartier Belinda Cartier on Sep 23, 2016
      Great ideal! Thank you😊

    • Loretta Stewart Loretta Stewart on Sep 24, 2016

  • Barb Smith Barb Smith on Aug 16, 2016
    Would it have been easier to attach the lights to the frame first?

    • Jill Jill on Aug 17, 2016
      I'd have thought so aswell, but the leaves might have covered them. I think if I made one I'd do lights and leaves at same time, cover the wire and see your progress at the same time😀🇬🇧

    • Thrifty Artsy Girl Thrifty Artsy Girl on Aug 26, 2016
      This is a common question, so common that I started second guessing myself, until a string of lights went out. Instead of having to take all the leaves and lights off, I just had to move the leaves and take the lights off. Much easier :)

    • Denise Pittman Denise Pittman on Aug 31, 2016
      I attached the lights first on one I did last year. The lights I used were battery with a timer from QVC. If one light goes out the others still burn. I tucked the battery boxes under the tomato cage. It worked really well and the lights could be seen easily.

    • How many lights on your strings ?

  • Ell8023973 Ell8023973 on Oct 12, 2016
    Will a 6' garland be long enough to cover the tomato cage?

  • Michele Michele on Nov 04, 2016
    Would like to use your idea at a 4-H project workshop, and in order for them to exhibit and have judged at the county fair, the judges really look at copyrite. If it is ok for them to use your idea, with a few changes, I do have a form I'd like to email and have you fill out so each individual could have a copy for their exhibit. Please email me at kellymd@iastate.edu and I will get the form sent to you. Thanks in advance, Michele Kelly

  • Linda Holland Linda Holland on Aug 30, 2017
    I did this last year with Christmas garland. Had issue with garland falling in between the bottom wires. Have you and if so what did you do?

  • Vickie Finley Vickie Finley on Oct 02, 2017
    What size pot did you use

  • Allison Allison on Oct 12, 2017
    How did you get the tomato cage to stay put in the run without stopping over?

    • Sofia Applegate Sofia Applegate on May 01, 2018

      I havent made these yet, but my idea is to drill 4 small holes on the lip of the urn & use zip tyes or even floral wire or any thin wire.

    • Hot Glue works wonders too

    • Nate Nate on Jan 31, 2019

      Sofia Applegate,I was thinking about trying that too. I think the zip ties would work perfect. And Allison, I would use rocks. Sand would be a nightmare to clean up if they did get tipped over. Rocks are much easier to pick up.

    • Toni Kirsch Toni Kirsch on Oct 07, 2019

      I used a couple of bricks

  • Sandra Guffey Sandra Guffey on Nov 08, 2017
    Can I brush wax leaves since there real?If so can u tell me how?

  • Toni Johnson Toni Johnson on Oct 15, 2018

    Is it better to start the wrapping of the garland from the top or the bottom? Did you weight the pots down with anything?


Join the conversation

2 of 196 comments
  • E95656 E95656 on Sep 05, 2020

    So pretty!

  • Yvonne Yvonne on Sep 21, 2021

    Looks beautiful! I've seen similar poinsettia topiaries in catalogs, and they were charging $60 or more. Great idea, I hope to try it!