Instructables
Picture of Vertical garden made from scrap materials
I wanted to make this for a women's charity to hopefully get some people interested in gardening and maybe even sell what they grow. My father had lots of spare wood knocking around so when they gave me permission to build one, I set about designing and making it.
I am not at all an expert in this kind of thing but it worked very well so I share it with you here.
It cost me less than £10 to make.

You will need:
Lots of good quality wood (i.e. strong enough to hold the weight of plant pots and not rotting)
Wood protector
The usual tools like a saw, hammer, plane, screwdriver
Nails and screws
 
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Step 1: The design

Picture of The design
I wanted to make it as compact as possible while being able to support a lot of plants. I tried a few designs until I came up with this one, which was partly determined by the wood that I had available (length of pieces and so on).
I decided to set the shelves in a step fashion so that none would be deprived of sunlight. Note how they come forward as they go down.
It had to be made shorter than this because the longest pieces I had were 2.16m which was still a good size.
The drinks bottles at the one end you see are optional extras that can be attached to grow more plants in.
The 80cm extension at the base it to provide it with stability, in case of winds from behind but it is very open and is unlikely to happen but it's always good to take precautions.
Eh Lie Us!2 years ago
Great use of limited space. I'm in the US and I'm a fan of the metric measurements. Equally great to see people buiding for charity. Best of luck.
Elliot Lord (author)  Eh Lie Us!2 years ago
Thanks very much. :) Yes, the metric system is far more sensible and if most of the world uses it, it kind of makes sense! (None of this 3/17 of a furlong makes up a pint and is equal to 1367 ounces rubbish!)
rmcgraw2 years ago
Perfect for my little patio! Thanks for the plan/design!
I can't tell which plant is spinach and which is cabbage [they look like cabbage] but all the pots on the second tier seem really shallow. How deep does a container need to be to grow leafy green things like spinach, lettuce & Swiss chard to normal harvest size?

Does the size of the container affect the size of the cabbage heads? [Sorry if this is a totally retarded question.]

Is there a rule-of-thumb for mature height of plant vs. depth of container?

Thanks, again, Elliot. Looking forward to my son making this for me!
Rhe
Elliot Lord (author)  rmcgraw2 years ago
Hi. The spinach is on top and grows very slowly. The cabbage is in the middle and need to be transferred. Of course the roots need enough space for a plant to flourish but I don't think they need to be in such big pots. I'd like to see them in pots smaller than the empty ones on the shelf below. They can make pots from 2 litre bottles that are about 15cm deep.
It would be great to know if you follow my design and make your own. Keep me informed!
Elliot Lord (author)  Elliot Lord2 years ago
Sorry, I didn't check the photo. I was talking about the middle empty pot so to correct that, they would do well in the smaller pots on the shelf below.
-chase-2 years ago
I've seen these before and this is a nice one.

And this instructable couldn't have come at a better time as just a week ago on a temp job clearing out some old shrubs from along side of a house this idea was discused for a herb garden fo the lady of the house who is is really into herbs.

This would be perfect for what she is looking for and looks real nice as well.

I like the suggestion of gaiatechnician conserning the pump idea - though this being Florida and with all the rain we've been getting - it may or may not be needed for this area.

though it might prove usefull for some type of auto fertilizer unit...

thanx for sharing your intructable.

- chase -
Elliot Lord (author)  -chase-2 years ago
Thanks for that. Yes, it just depends on the climate as to whether you'd need to use a pump. As I'm in England, this isn't a problem. It rains every day! (It's throwing it down right now...)
You can use an aquarium air pump with t valve airlift to recirculate water to the top 3 rows. If you put it on a timer, you can do this once an hour for peanuts worth of electricity. (Less than a dollars worth per year).
It looks fantastic! Love that you staggered the shelves too. Very smart. :)
Elliot Lord (author)  jessyratfink2 years ago
Thanks, Jessy!