No Space? Go Vertical!
Most of us have limited garden space and soon lust for more growing area. If you’ve run out of room in your garden, consider vertical gardening! From commercial vertical growing systems like the one shown above, to do-it-yourself systems from materials available at the local home improvement store, take a look at these fun options and get inspired to go vertical in your own garden!
Use Existing Walls or Fences to Go Vertical
Here’s a super simple vertical herb garden that can be assembled in no time! Clay pots are planted with assorted herbs and zip tied to a picket fence.
(photos and herb garden by Cassandra Taylor)
Repurpose Found Materials
An old ladder and storage baskets (with holes for drainage) team up to create a vertical garden in a 2′ by 3′ space. The baskets are planted with strawberries, but lettuce, herbs, even bush beans would be great alternatives!
(Ladder garden by Laura D.)
Wine Barrels Go Vertical
Wine barrel gardens (see earlier post) are one of my favorite systems for growing edibles. They hold lots of soil, are relatively inexpensive for their size, and are even large enough for dwarf fruit trees. I especially like them for growing blueberry shrubs. By stacking them, you can squeeze a couple more into your garden!
Vertical Garden Kits
There are LOTS of vertical garden kits available online and a few days ago I found one while strolling through Crate and Barrel at the local mall. I’ve been lusting after it ever since and today I bought it! After all, I think I need to test Crate and Barrel’s vertical gardening system myself! I’ll keep you posted on my experience in future articles.
Tips for Vertical Gardening
1. Watering – This is the biggest challenge. Vertical gardens dry out much faster as they have less soil and more surface area exposed to sunlight. Drip irrigation on a timer is the best way to keep plants watered consistently.
2. Plant selection – Keep them small (unless you’re using wine barrels). Most vertical gardens have limited capacity to hold soil so plants that stay small like herbs, strawberries, and lettuces will do better than larger plants. If you try plants like tomatoes, beans, cucumber, choose ‘patio’ or ‘bush’ varieties as these stay smaller.
3. Feeding – As with all containers, the nutrients will wash out of the soil due to frequent watering so be sure to fertilize regularly.