Picture of Successful Container Gardening
Many people have that 'Green Thumb' and really enjoy gardening but don't live in a place where there is enough room to do any gardening.

Still others who possess the 'Green Thumb' for in the ground planting are frustrated by trying to satisfy their need to grow things when it comes to planting in containers.

Here is a simple yet inexpensive solution to the problem to successfully gardening in containers.

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
All you need to get started is any kind of non degradable container, depending on what you want to grow, ie, a plastic bin, large food containers like cottage cheese or soft butter spreads come in.

I had several of those large plastic bins that slide under the bed and the deeper ones from Wally World, redwood planters that look like half barrels and have used 2 and 3 liter soda bottles (http://www.instructables.com/id/Go_Green_Upside_Down_Hanging_Planters/) and made a hanging herb garden on my patio! You need to determine container size by root depth and recommended spacing.

Get some potting mix, compost if you need it, garden bark or some kind of filler that won't pack down, pre-started plants or seeds, and a cardboard roll from either, toilet tissue, paper towels or gift wrap, depending on how deep your container is.

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I commented on the front page about drainage also, missed the pics somehow.

You will find that by adding drainage material that you are effectively reducing the size (volume) of your container, and effectively raising the water level that the soil holds. The equilibrium between capillary action (up) and gravitational flow (down) in the soil remains the same, just now in an effectively smaller container.

Just a tip. You don't need a hole/tube in the middle of a pot if your soil characteristics promote drainage.

Please do not take this negative:

If you need a creative method for even watering, then you are using the wrong soil. period. A soil for a container planting should take water straight through, that is, be very well draining and porous. If your water is only saturating the top of the container soil, then you really, really need to revisit your soil mix.
Ever so often I run across an idea that is just so logical and obvious I can't help wondering why no one has thought of it before!  Awesome idea! Thanks!
Aronbao5 years ago
nice job,thanks
francoe5 years ago
The egg shells are not very effective. They contains calcium, but in a way that, even wiht a proper degrade, can't be taked by the plants. You can easily find  cheap mineral calcium used in agriculture (calcium sulphate).
The epson salt are good source of magnesium (again, they are magnesium sulphate), but take care that not use bath salts. They contains chemicals that use to be toxic for plants.
AmyLuthien5 years ago
Good idea!  Reminds me of sticky traps I used to use when I was working in commercial greenhouses.  As a point of interest, the color yellow is highly attractive to whiteflies.  Now to find bright yellow lids!  

b1russell5 years ago
Great post - thanks! But (ahem) what about those of us poor folks WITHOUT a green thumb? I have it on the best authority that I possess a matched pair of "black thumbs" - as witnesses, I call the (dirge sounds) bodies of deceased house and garden plants. Can this help me, too?
Deewheat6 years ago
Great idea!
hsmomof26 years ago
For the last 2 years I have been wanting to try one because we live on the side of a hill. So, we don't have a lot of flat ground to plant anything. Great info about how to do one, thanks!
im4tooele6 years ago
That looks easy.
chauntee26 years ago
That is a really good idea;)
GloriaJ6 years ago
This is a great idea and very helpful information. Thanks.
juvinurse6 years ago
Great idea for those of us that do not have real space for a garden.
aunty6 years ago
You have done a very nice job here.
DebH57 (author)  aunty6 years ago
Thank you
Bratillia6 years ago
Looks interesting
DebH57 (author)  Bratillia6 years ago
Thank you
BettyBoop16 years ago
I used this page to start my flowers with, they are doing great. Thank you
DebH57 (author)  BettyBoop16 years ago
You are welcome and thanks for letting us know, please keep us updated Betty.
I am getting things together to do this one it looks very interesting
DebH57 (author)  AmazingGracie6 years ago
I think you will like how it all comes together Grace
CAWildWoman6 years ago
I tried this out, it was so quick and easy, my flowers are already perky after only two days. The cardboard tube is great, the lids to catch bugs works like a charm. Thanks for posting this DebH.
DebH57 (author)  CAWildWoman6 years ago
Thanks for saying so CA, enjoy your flowers
mman15066 years ago
just wondering how the vasline works .is it so the bugs get stuck to it or do they not like vaseline
DebH57 (author)  mman15066 years ago
They get stuck in it mostly, they are attracted to the 'stickiness' which distracts them from your plants.
evan_1246 years ago
since the "root depth" was mentioned when considering the size of the container, i was wondering if anyone knew of any places to find info about a given plant's root depth. and another bravo on the cardboard tube idea, love it. one thing tho, i was thinking that if you put the tube right over the drainage hole of you container, you may lose a lot of water as it would just flow right through quickly. at least thats what i imagine would happen.
DebH57 (author)  evan_1246 years ago
For root depth I would suggest Googling it specific to what your are planting. Since you determine where the drainage holes go omit putting one in the direct center, if it already has holes put your cardboard tube just off center. Your watering is not limited to the tube only you can water around it as well.
yoshhash6 years ago
ok, this is getting redundant, but I really have to add how much I love the cardboard tube waterer- freakin' brilliant! Finally a genuinely valueable way to put them to good use!
DebH57 (author)  yoshhash6 years ago
LOL Yoshhash, thank you very much be as redundant as you need to be, I appreciate your comments.
ChrysN6 years ago
I'll have to try the cardboard tube and your pest control method, these are great ideas!
DebH57 (author)  ChrysN6 years ago
Well thank you very much Chrys!
bethmez6 years ago
I have never thought of using vaseline or Karo to discourage pests. Will have to try this!
DebH57 (author)  bethmez6 years ago
It is a good alternative Beth - and cheap too!
wreck DebH576 years ago
I will try this one. Lots of good tips in here, thank you.
DebH57 (author)  wreck6 years ago
Most welcome Wreck, I would like to hear your results. Thanks for commenting!
geekyb6 years ago
Neat idea on the drainage system. I've been looking to try a hanging bucket planter for tomatoes, will the cardboard tube trick work well with that system, too?
DebH57 (author)  geekyb6 years ago
I've never tried it GeekyB but if your plant is hanging the root system will be up the center of your bucket and it drains automatically through the hole. I would think if you wanted to add this maybe put in two; one on each side of the bucket but IMHO I don't see a need for it. I've only done mine in soda bottles and there would not be room enough for this type of drainage.
PrinceJ576 years ago
I really like the cardboard tube idea thats a nice touch...great instructable!
DebH57 (author)  PrinceJ576 years ago
Thanks Prince, it does a good job for me.
The cardboard tube bit is an excellent idea! I also like your pest control strategy. Much better than coating the plants with nasty sprays!
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