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4 Vertical Garden Ideas To Help Get Your Garden Going

May 24, 2020 by Liz Brumer

If you're interested in starting a garden but are short on space, consider growing up. Vertical gardening can be a fun, creative, and unique way to plant a garden even if you're tight on space. These four vertical garden ideas will help put your green thumb to work and give you actionable ideas to grow a garden even with limited space.

What is a vertical garden?

A vertical garden is a growing method where plants are planted vertically instead of horizontally. By stacking plants into various growing containers layered on top of one another rather than spreading them out, you can grow a lot more in a small amount of space.

Important considerations for a vertical garden

Plants have certain needs that must be fulfilled in order for them to stay happy and healthy:

  • Light.
  • Water.
  • Nutrients.

There are many ways to meet these needs with your vertical garden, depending on whether you are growing indoors or out and how you design the vertical garden.

Regardless of whether you are growing indoors using an LED light system or outdoors to take advantage of the sunshine, the plants will need anywhere from two to 12 hours of light a day, depending on the plants you're growing and the climate you live in.

Water usage can vary greatly, especially depending on your climate, but even the most drought-tolerant desert species still need some water. Vertical gardens that are designed well can be very efficient at using water because the water from the topmost plants filters down to the lower plants, leaving you with little if any wasted water.

Nutrients are critical to plant growth, even when growing hydroponically in water. No matter what your growing method, water-soluble or granular fertilizers are widely available for purchase.

Ideas for vertical gardens

One of the first things you will likely come across when looking for vertical garden ideas is a hydroponic grow tower. This is a closed system where water is circulated from the top plants to the bottom plants on a regular schedule. Sizes vary, as do prices, but they are an easy-to-manage, pre-assembled option for your vertical garden.

The classic vertical garden approach uses a trellis in the garden, whether for food crops or flowers. This only works for vining plants, but it can be an eye-catching way to display your beautiful greenery and make harvesting food crops easier. The trellis can be made of bamboo poles, plastic, or even a metal arch for heavier plants or permanent displays.

The herb spiral is a creative and cost-effective way to grow a vertical garden. A spiral that is five feet across and three feet high can create about 30 linear feet of planting space. It's made by mounding soil and then using rocks that spiral around and up to hold the soil in place. Herbs, small plants, or flowers are then planted in the spiral. If you want to really make your vertical garden space as efficient as possible, install a mini sprinkler at the top, creating less ongoing maintenance for you.

A living wall can be a stunning focal point for a patio or even the interior of your home. Typically, small containers are hung in a grid system so that the plants create a wall. There's a wide variety of options you can choose from for a living wall, from pre-assembled systems to a DIY pallet or custom wood construction. A living wall can be planted with succulents, ferns, flowers, or edibles, and it makes a wonderful statement.

Gardening was in the top third of all activities for creating a sense of happiness, according to a recent Princeton study. So why not boost your happiness by growing a vertical garden? Vertical garden ideas can be a creative and interesting focal point both indoors and out. They save space, can reduce watering needs, and can be very low maintenance if designed well.

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