Step 6: Tips

- Make sure the planter gets sun from all four sides, or at least as much as possible
- Strawberries are good plants to plant inside
- Try using all-year round plants to keep your planter pretty all year

For people living in apartments, keep the planter steady by putting it in a bucket  or anything else heavy enough to keep it from tipping over and falling (also you can make it a base or stand).

This is my first Instructable so don't be harsh :)
Comments and improvements are always welcomed.
<p>OK To try and add some actual reality check to the comments I read i post the following. And yes, I would build this.</p><p>Plasticised PVC has been used for over 50 years without a single known case of it having caused any ill-health and the environmental effects of phthalates are known to be minimal. Academia and industry have continually worked together to address the concerns and conduct necessary research, making phthalates some of the most researched and best understood chemicals today.</p><p><br><strong>Carcinogenicity</strong><br>Some concerns have been expressed concerning carcinogenicity. In 1980s, liver tumour of rats and mice was reported upon an extremely high dosing of DEHP, but subsequent studies clarified that such effects are unique to rodents such as rats and mice and would not occur in primates such as monkeys. In 2000, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC: an affiliate organisation of World Health Organisation - WHO) re-classified DEHP from Group 2B to Group 3 in their carcinogenicity evaluation, thus clearly showing that DEHP is not carcinogenic to humans. Tea and tap water (drinking water sterilised with chlorine) are also included in Group 3, which means that the carcinogenicity of DEHP is lower than that of coffee.<br><br><strong>Endocrine Modulation</strong><br>In past years concerns have been reported on about possible risks of PVC products related to endocrine modulation and alleged disruption of certain phthalates. <br><br>Phthalates are a large and diverse family of chemical substances with different hazard classifications regarding human health.</p><ul><br><li>High molecular weight phthalates DINP, DIDP and DPHP, which are the most widely used in Europe, are not endocrine disruptors.<li>Low molecular weight phthalates DEHP, DBP, BBP and DIBP have all been classified as toxic to reproduction of category 1B.with hazard phrase H360 (&ldquo;May damage fertility or the unborn child&rdquo;)</ul><p>Further information and references may be found at<br><a href="http://www.plasticisers.org/en_GB/health/health-misconceptions" rel="nofollow">http://www.plasticisers.org/en_GB/health/health-misconceptions</a></p>
<p>Como resolvo o problema do substrato escorrer pelos furos?</p>
PVC is not toxic. It is not food safe either. That is why you never see foods packaged in PVC. Believe me, if it was safe for food, you'd see it everywhere in the grocery aisles. <br> <br>As for plumbing, PVC is used for water/waste leaving the house, not coming into it. <br> <br>The reason PVC is not food safe is because petro chemicals leech out of it over time. This means that over time, what ever is stored inside absorbs those chemicals. If it is food, and the food is ingested, then those chemicals gets inside whoever eats that food. <br> <br>This is a great idea, but we need a different material to build it from.
<p>Que tal bambo? </p>
PVC is most certainly used in plumbing for cold water supply. If your refrigerator has an icemaker, the water supply likely goes through PVC. I don't know the technical definition of &quot;food safe&quot; but please don't scare people with misinformation.
PVC, or polyvinyl chloride is in wide use for both water (cPVC) and even food storage (Saran wrap apparently makes use of it). However, what is not commonly known is that there are chemicals which can be leeched out of the plastic through time or environment. PVC outgasses (as does most plastics, which is why they have the smell). Heat also causes the PVC to outgas, One reason why you shouldn't microwave Saran wrap (or any plastic wrap) is that the thalates which makes the plastic pliable leeches out and into your food. Studies have shown a possible link between thalates and a reduction in population growth. <br>Further, food manufacturers (and I do work for one) will not use PVC for their packaging because of the leeching concern. This leeching is what makes PVC not food grade. <br><br>Now, I'm not saying that your project is bad. But I am concerned about the material used. Especially since I assume this is something that will be out in the full sun, where it will get heated up. <br><br>The vertical watering system is a great idea and I hope to use it myself. <br><br>But I couldn't just let everyone thing that is was perfectly okay to us PVC in food manufacturing, even when it's growing it yourself.
<p>So, what you're really saying is this project is great for plants that aren't going to be there for long periods of time. Pvc's chemicals take quite a while to leech into anything that is put in it. That's why it's neither safe nor unsafe. Am I correct?</p>
<p>Not quite. The idea is great, but the material is questionable. </p><p>While some will scoff at the left leaning liberal organizations who issue warnings on these and other materials, it is worth noting that the FDA has yet to allow rigid PVC to be used in food packaging. Also, I mentioned environment as an issue. In particular, I was thinking of the heating the material will get from the sun. It speeds up the transfer of chemicals from the plastic to the soil it will be containing. Of particular concern is vinyl chloride monomer (VCM) which is used to create PVC and is a known carcinogen. </p><p>If you do a search on the internet, you'll see plenty of arguments for both sides of the debate. In the end, the choice is yours. But for me, I'd steer clear of the PVC in this project. Remember, x-rays were once thought to be completely harmless. Now you can't get a medical tech to be in the same room with the x-ray machine when it is being used.</p>
<p><a href="https://www.instructables.com/member/avinsen/" rel="nofollow">avinsen</a><a href="https://www.instructables.com/id/DIY-Organic-Vertical-Planter/#CK6EPZ5HUYM3CTR" rel="nofollow">silkier<br></a></p><p>I <br>am interested in this project. I know that I can use Clorox in a water <br>solution to clean wine and beer bottles to use again for home brewing. Could a <br>Clorox solution wash be used to reduce the hazard in a PVC pipe, to warrant use as a <br>growing structure? If not I am going to use ceramic drain tile to accomplish <br>this project.</p>
<p>One minute you talk of PVC the next you are talking about phthalates, not the same thing at all. Please make your mind up and take a look at some peer reviewed research on the subject of PVC in contact with growing plants.</p>
<p>The reason for the mention of phthalates is because of it's use in plastic manufacturing. It is used as a plasticizer and is what gives plastics its ability to flex and bend without breaking. Otherwise, plastics are very rigid and fragile. You can see an example of this when you see old plastic that's been out in the sun for extended period. As the phthalates leave the plastic, it become brittle and inflexible. This is due to the fact that the phthalates have left the plastic leaving it in this fragile state. Plastics and phthalates are both part of the same conversation. In this context, it is difficult to separate the two.</p><p>That said, if you have examples of peer review articles in a scientific or trade journal, please feel free to post it, as I would love to read it.</p><p>Thanks.</p>
I am not concerned about this use of PVC, and I don't think any reasonable person should be. The author suggests putting cold water in a pipe designed and engineered for moving cold water meant for human consumption. <br> <br>If this use of PVC worries you than you have a great deal to worry about. If your house or apartment is plumbed with PVC than you are putting PVC water on your food, your house plants, drinking it, and cooking with it. If your garden hose is made of PVC, than you are watering your garden with PVC water. Hell, your gutters could be made of PVC, than all the rain washing off your roof onto your yard is PVC water. <br>
Thank you for the info. I will definitely take it into consideration :D
It seems to me a cheap way to avoid toxic problems would be to roll out a sheet of wax paper a couple of inches longer than your tube. Tightly roll the paper lengthwise, fasten the ends with tape or clips and insert in your tube. When you release your clips plastic paper roll will unroll to the size of your tube, giving you a food grade liner! You could double this roll tfor extra protection.It could be changed every 3 to 4 years when the container would need to be emptied due to being rootbound depending on what plants you grow. <br>
<p>Como evitar que a terra (substrato) escorra pelos furos ao longo do PVC?</p>
<p>Very cool! Thanks for posting.</p>
<p>Hey, great concept, really liked your choice of plants too. Keep innovating.</p><p>Cheers!</p>
<p>After all this talk about PVCs (even though I'm late on the issue) and pointing to green peace, etc... I thought I'd look up on more of an authoritative location. Please read at your leisure and make your own decisions. </p><p><a href="http://toxtown.nlm.nih.gov/text_version/chemicals.php?id=84" rel="nofollow">http://toxtown.nlm.nih.gov/text_version/chemicals.php?id=84</a></p><p>(US Nat'l Library of Medicine talking about PVC and health concerns.)</p>
<p>What about abs pipe? The black stuff I found 5 8 footers on CL for free</p>
<p>Check out aeroponics. Instead of soil, you just use water. <br>I have read that US PVC has less toxins than PVC from China. <br>Youtube has a lot of information and examples of vertical aeroponic gardening.<br>Hydroponics uses fish in a tank and circulates water through everything. I will pass on the fish and go just with the water and plants. <br>RASA has supplies on the internet. I am near San Jose, CA so will drive down.<br>Apparently they use a small pump, like for a fish tank to recirculate the water. <br>It appears that they just use a bit of fertilizer to get things growing. <br>You start seeds in something just to hold the roots. I am going to try a small wad of quilting fiber in a net plastic cup. <br>The holes can be drilled so the 2&quot; net cups snap right into the vertical planter PVC. Some Vertical chambers appear 6&quot; others appear 10&quot; in diameter. <br>Another design is heated and bent to accommodate the net cups. Remember heating plastic requires &quot;well ventilated area.&quot; If you are in the middle of your back yard and there is no breeze, you are not in a &quot;well ventilated area&quot;!<br>The third design shows a smaller 2&quot; PVC cut at angles, the holes in the vertical pipe are cut at angles and the net plastic cup sits in that. <br>I intend to pass on the heated one and try 1 and 3. <br>I will also use a gutter under the vertical hangers to drain into a bucket with the pump. Plants are suppose to grow much faster without the soil. <br>You are also suppose to watch the PH. Epson salt is suppose to work there. There are meters to test PH.</p>
<p>Hi, how do you keep the ground from washing out through the holes or is that not a real problem?</p>
<p>It is a problem, even when I had 2cm diameter holes. Put some waterproof foil around the plant that you planted so that you also push it under the PVC pipe and then the rain and soil will only make it tighter as long as you tuck it in properly under the PVC and around the plant.<br>BTW, you might like to try this with strawberries - works amazingly!</p>
Great idea. What did you use to paint the pipe? Do you think it would be possible to &quot;stain&quot; the PVC to where the color would last longer? <br> <br>Also, in light of the comments about the toxicity of PVC, what about using a clay pipe like those of old for construction? I think one may still be able to get them. Not sure how they would hold up to being cut, but they would be of the same type of material that is used for regular clay planting pots. <br> <br>Thanks again! <br> <br>
the PVC i used is NOT TOXIC at all. this PVC is the same one that is used for house pluming, and like a said its NOT TOXIC. I dont know where you get you PVC from or what job that PVC was made for but my is NOT TOXIC and is the right one for the job. <br> <br>i did not paint the PVC it came at that color. <br>i think clay pipe will make a good job because they are astatic,and there biodegradability, i dont know how will you can cut them if you can. but if so it will make a very cool Vertical Planter
You are not getting it my green friend. If its labelled PVC, it is PVC and its harmful. The whole article is about after it gets burned or thrown away. We cant install it and hope it does not get burned. we have to prevent it. <br>The idea is excellent, but the PVC is not green, not matter how much the manufacturer claims it to be. <br>Instead of buying more plastic it would be better if we reuse what others throw away <br>See http://www.petenpam.com/?p=94 <br>And http://youtu.be/-uDbjZ9roEQ <br>We dont need PVC and we can still stack as a tower.
<p>I thought the whole idea was to reuse a PVC pipe in the first place. Therefore taking a waste product and reusing/upcycling it.</p>
Thats cool...I was not worried about the toxicity at all... just thought I would mention the clay as that popped into my head when I saw the original color of the PVC that you have. I would prefer it the brown color that you have, vice the white that is available to me. <br><br>I know that the grey exists at my homeimprovement store... I believe it is for electrical conduit -but it would work as well.<br><br>Thanks for the reply and great instrucable.<br><br>Jim
PVC can indeed be stained quite effectively (and I think it looks a lot better than the results I've gotten with plastic-bonding spray paint). See the following link for details and instructions: <br>http://makeprojects.com/Project/Stain-PVC-Any-Color-You-Like/296/1
pvc as an fyi - Thank you, I f/u with web search and found this info., appreciated you heads' up. &quot;Relatively new data show that, in laboratory tests, some phthalates behave as endocrine disruptors, which seems likely to explain some, but not all, of their toxic effects&quot; @ http://www.sehn.org/Endocrine_Disruption.html
<p>You won't find phthalates in a PVC water pipe. Here you see a perfect example of someone confusing the issue to reinforce a dubious point. This is how the tobacco industry and many others have used dissinformation to confuse the public. One moment talk about one thing and in the same sentence talk about another unconnected thing. The average reader doesn't realise that there is no connection and so the misinformation reinforces prejudice/ignorance. </p>
This looks interesting. What garden plants do you recommend other than strawberries and Cucumbers?
beans, tomatoes, all kinds of peepers, lettuce. <br>what i did is just take stuff i like think for a few sec if it will work or, talked with my local gardening store.
If your planting tomatoes(a heavy feeder) the drip irrigation bottle with added plant food would be a good idea. If you are an organic gardener manure tea would work to replace Miracle Grow.
I have 4 lettuce plants in a 4' gutter piece left over from our house, We attached it to our railing on the porch and trim it every few days, it grows so fast. We especially love adding it to our hamburgers and sandwiches as we make them!
I suppose you could also hang the tubes or even make a Xmas tree like stand for them if you wanted the flexibility to be able to move them. Also it occurs to me that sewing a tube out of a waterproof nylon would also make a pretty good cheap easy to make planting tube and cutting the holes would be a lot easier, although they would have to be hung from a fence or a wall.
I'm about to make one of these and I was thinking I would use old wire hangers to support the tubes against my balcony's railings. I'll either drill holes for the hangers to go through or wrap the hanger around.
Yup, that sounds nice, if you need any help with that, you can always ask us :)
I made it and ended up using parachord to support it against the railings. I've had a few people in my appartment ask about it and once they found out what it is thought it was really cool. The planters are in the background against the railing in this picture.
A vastly better way of doing this would be to use four untreated planks instead of a PVC pipe, to make a long square planter. <br> <br>Two reasons. <br> <br>1) It avoids the possibility of the toxicity issues that some have raised. <br> <br>2) It's easier to fill with compost at the beginning of the season, and clear out at the end of the season. One simply unscrews one plank to have easy access to the inside of the container, as a U-shaped channel.
its a nice idea but i dont know how practical it is.
i posted some new pictures that show how much it grew <br>and i added a picture of the first harvest of the season <br>
Very much a D'oh! moment - strawberry planters have done this for ages. More recently, so have 'flower pouches' and - to a degree - so do potato planters (admittedly, to very different scales).<br> <br><br> <br>Why isn't <em>this</em> more common!?<br> <br><br> <br>-------------<br> <br><br> <br>A more 'biodegradeable' version might be to use the cardboard tubes that carpets come on (or bolts of fabric, or how about postal tubes).<br> <br><br> <br>Though, obviously, they WILL ROT, and you may want to use a wood preservative to colour them until your plants disguise them.<br> <br><br> <br>And you might want to be careful (particularly with foodcrops)&nbsp;about any chemicals they might contain.<br> <br><br> <br>---------------<br> <br><br> <br>If you want to make more of a display, then binding several together (rather like a 'desk tidy') would probably allow you to sink them less deeply.
the PVC i used is NOT TOXIC at all. this PVC is the same one that is used for house pluming, and like a said its NOT TOXIC. I dont know where you get you PVC from or what job that PVC was made for but my is NOT TOXIC and is the right one for the job. <br>
RE your &quot;NOT TOXIC&quot;: <br> <br>&quot;The worst plastic, from both an environmental and health standpoint, is polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, commonly known as vinyl.&quot; <br> <br>http://healthychild.org/blog/comments/pvc_the_most_toxic_plastic/ <br> <br>&quot;While on its surface PVC may appear to be the ideal building material, it has high environmental and human health costs that its manufacturers fail to tell consumers.&quot; - Greenpeace <br> <br>http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/news-and-blogs/news/how-to-find-and-avoid-toxic-vi/
'Greenpeace&quot; <br> <br>Ahh, the nutjobs.
And don't confuse &quot;food grade&quot; with &quot;non-toxic&quot;. Plastic is petroleum-based...it's toxic.
I never said yours is toxic&nbsp;- nor did I intend to imply either that it is,&nbsp;OR that <em>any</em> PVC&nbsp;is<em> </em>toxic.<br> <br> My mention of chemicals was <em>only</em> in connection with the cardboard tubes&nbsp;alternative - and, then,&nbsp;simply because I don't know what is in the glue that holds the layers together, or in what waterproofs the exteriors of postal tubes.
thank you <br>i just wanted to make sure there are no miss understand
I think that from what i've read, PVC is ok as long as it stays cool. Exposed PVC has issues of leaching chemicals. That is why it is ok to have your well water supplied by pvc but not the rest of your house especially after your water heater. Being outside in the sun might be an issue for leaching chemicals. Just mentioning what i've read on it. I'll try and find some links.
Cardboard, at least the corregated type, isn't toxic. In fact, it makes great worm bedding.

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