How to Create a Vertical Garden: A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners | Kids Growing CityOct 18, 2023
Are you ready to take your gardening skills to new heights? Today, I'm diving into the wonderful world of vertical gardening. I'll show you how to create your very own vertical garden, bringing nature's beauty right to your indoors, especially during fall and winter, for your family. Growing vertical gardens is really fun with kids!
Step 1: Choose the Perfect Spot
First things first, find a suitable location for your vertical garden. Look for an area that receives ample sunlight and has good air circulation. It could be a balcony, or a patio for spring and summer gardening, or even a sunny wall inside your home for the rest of the year. Remember, plants need sunlight to thrive! And if you can't find a sunny spot, you need to seriously consider grow lights. For leafy greens and most annual herbs 4 hours of direct sunlight or 10 hours of artificial lighting should be enough. But if you want to grow plants such as tomatoes, you want to consider at least 6 hours of direct sunlight or 14 hours of artificial lighting.
Step 2: Select the Right Plants
Next, it's time to choose the stars of your vertical garden. Opt for plants that are well-suited for vertical growth, such as herbs, leafy greens, and compact flowering plants. Consider their sunlight and water requirements, as well as their compatibility with each other. Most important factor to consider here is root depth and the size of your containers. If your containers will be small, planting tomatoes is not a good idea. But leaf lettuce, for example works very well in small pots.
Step 3: Get Creative with Containers
Now comes the fun part – selecting containers for your vertical garden. You can use anything from hanging baskets and wall-mounted planters to repurposed pallets and even shoe organizers. Just make sure they have proper drainage to prevent waterlogging. If you are using a container that does not have drainage designed to it, you will need to bring out those good old drills and make some holes.
Also make sure your containers don't leach anything into your soil. For houseplants you didn't need to worry about this too much. But since you'll be growing veggies that your family will eat, this is super important. Be aware of chemical colors in fabrics and the recycling number on any plastic containers that you are reusing. The food grade plastic containers are the best, if you are using plastic.
Step 4: Prepare the Soil
Prepare a nutrient-rich soil mix for your plants. Remember that on top of the fact that good quality soil will ensure your plants grow well, the richness of the soil also affects the nutrients in the plants your family will be eating. You can either buy a pre-made potting mix or create your own by combining compost, peat moss, and perlite. Ensure that the soil is well-draining to prevent root rot. Don't just take soil from your garden unless you know that soil is a really rich and well draining soil.
Step 5: Plant and Arrange
It's time to get your hands dirty! Carefully plant your chosen green buddies into their designated containers, ensuring they have enough space to grow. Experiment with different arrangements to create a visually appealing display.
Step 6: Water and Feed
Proper watering is crucial for the success of your vertical garden. Make sure to water your plants regularly, keeping the soil moist but not waterlogged. Consider using a drip irrigation system or self-watering containers to simplify the process. Additionally, feed your plants with a balanced organic fertilizer to promote healthy growth. Organic fertilizers are a lot easier to work with as they are "softer" and if you accidentally put too much, they don't harm your plants the way chemical fertilizers would. And of course, I always promote growing organically, free if chemicals, for the health of your family.
Step 7: Maintain and Enjoy
Congratulations, you've created your very own vertical garden! Now, all that's left is to maintain it with love and care. Regularly prune (harvest) your plants to encourage new growth and of course, also to enjoy the food. Remove any dead or yellowing leaves. Take a moment each day to appreciate the beauty and serenity your vertical garden brings to your space and don't forget to enjoy the food it produces with your family.
Remember, gardening is a journey of patience and learning. Don't be afraid to experiment, ask questions, and seek inspiration from fellow gardening enthusiasts. Happy gardening!
I hope this step-by-step guide has inspired you to embark on your vertical gardening adventure. Start growing up, not out, and bring the joy of homegrown food to your doorstep. For more gardening tips and tricks, stay tuned to Kids Growing City. Together, let's nurture nature and create a greener future!
Don't forget to share this guide with your fellow gardening enthusiasts who are eager to take their gardening skills to new heights. Let's spread the joy of vertical gardening far and wide!