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How to make a garden windmill

Updated February 21, 2017

Add whimsy to your garden landscape with a windmill you can make yourself. These decorative crafts are charming and can be small enough to add to a flower bed or large enough to be the focal point of your garden. Make your garden windmill from metal sheeting, copper tubing, PVC pipe or wood and paint any of the materials with exterior acrylics for added interest. Your windmill may not produce energy, but it will enhance the appearance of your garden.

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  1. Collect your materials from your local home improvement supply store. The materials list indicated here is for a 5' treated wood windmill. Adjust the sizes as needed to fit your garden. Most home improvement stores will cut the wood you purchase from them to size for you.

  2. Attach the "L" bracket to the centre of the 4 x 4 x 2 block of treated wood. Drill a one inch hole in the centre of the 3 x 3 x 1 strip of treated wood. Attach the 3 x 3 x 1 wood strip to the "L" bracket.

  3. Attach one of the five feet strips of wood loosely to each side of the 4 x 4 block at each corner. Stand the frame upright with the 4 x 4 block on top. Adjust the 5' legs of your garden windmill so that the base is shaped like a cone. The measurement between each strip should be equal across the bottom of the cone, somewhere between three and four feet. Tighten the screws to completely attach the 5' strips.

  4. Cut the 4 x 7 wood panels to fit each section of your cone frame. Attach the panels to the 5' trim and 4" wood block of the cone. You now have the base for your garden windmill.

  5. Make a template for the blades of your windmill with craft paper. The triangle shaped blades should have two sides that are 18 inches long and one side that is six inches wide. Cut four triangle shaped blades from the ¼ inch thick sheet of treated wood.

  6. Drill one inch holes in each of the blades, as close to the end of the 18 inch tip as possible. Layer two of the blades side by side so that the holes are on top of each other. Join the two blades together with the 2 inch metal bracket, keeping the holes together. Add the other two blades to form a circle, keeping the holes uniformly together.

  7. Insert the bolt through the hole in the blades, then through the opening in the 3 x 3 piece on top of the windmill base. Attach the bolt with a nut.

  8. Seal your garden windmill with wood sealer.

  9. Tip

    Paint your windmill with exterior paint for added interest.


    Build any outdoor wood project with treated wood as it is protected from mildew and insects.

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Things You'll Need

  • 1 "L" bracket
  • 1 4" x 4" x 2" Block of treated wood
  • 1 3" x 3" x 1" Strip of treated wood
  • 4 1" x 2" x 5' Strips of treated wood
  • 2 Treated wood panels, 4' x 7'
  • Skill saw
  • Drill
  • 1" hole Bit
  • Craft paper
  • 1 3' x 4' x 1/4" Sheet of treated wood
  • 4 2" Straight metal brackets
  • Screwdriver
  • Screws
  • 3" x 3/4" diameter bolt with nut
  • Wood sealer

About the Author

Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home-improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost-effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.

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