Whether you garden from an apartment balcony, a postage stamp-sized backyard, or acres upon acres, vertical gardening provides new opportunities.
From colorful flowering vines to delicious edibles, the sky’s the limit when you’re growing up.
The key to healthy plants, no matter where you garden, is good-quality soil and consistent drainage.
7 best vertical gardening options
1. Put plants in pockets. Recycled pocket planters have become an easy way to grow vertically indoors and out. Their modern, modular design allows for customization and many styles are self-watering. A reservoir keeps plants watered for up to two weeks, saving time and water.
2. Stack ’em up. Stacked planters make it possible to enjoy fresh lettuce, strawberries or tomatoes in virtually any space. Make your own using terra cotta pots and posts or opt for store-bought. Many versions offer multiple growing holes to create a cascade of flowers or herbs.
3. Go big or go home. Tiered vertical growing systems allow for more plants in less space, making them ideal for patios, decks and balconies. Upcycled options include old pallets, bookshelves or wooden shutters. Pre-assembled options include drip irrigation, drainage and are made of non-toxic materials.
4. You’ve been framed. Instead of framing a picture, frame a garden. Succulents and other slow-growing plants work great when placed together in a small framed wall planter. They are easy to move, maintain and water. Create an outdoor gallery wall by hanging multiple frames together.
5. Get your mind out of the gutter. Repurpose gutters into planters to fill long or open spaces. Be sure to drill drainage holes and don’t overfill. If you want to plant edibles, stay away from metal gutters and opt for gutter-style planters instead. Many are made from sustainable wood and contain no lead or heavy metals.
6. Create a potted wall. Make the most of any space by covering it with inexpensive terra cotta pots. Install by wrapping wire or twine around the pots, leaving a little extra to form a loop. Arrange eye hooks on a wall or fence in a row, a grid, or any pattern you’d like. Hang pots by the loop attached to S-hooks. Fill pots with spillers and fillers to take advantage of every inch of space in your garden.
7. Step up. For the easiest and most portable vertical garden, simply unfold a ladder. Paint a wooden ladder to match your décor and neatly stack pots on each rung. Add hooks to hang baskets.