How to Start a Vertical Garden Indoors and Out - Backyard Boss
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How to Start a Vertical Garden Indoors and Out

Vertical gardens are a great way to save space while still growing a decent number of edible plants. You can create them in a wide range of styles, designs, and looks and a host of different plant types. I enjoy a combination of several for both my indoor and outdoor gardening spaces.

If you’re not entirely sure how to get started, though, you’ve come to the right place. Below I’ll offer a list of basic supplies you’ll need as well as an easy how-to to follow. You’ll just need to make your tweaks and changes based on the vertical gardening ideas you choose to use for your finished product.

What You’ll Need

plants, seeds, and gardening tools on a table
Image credits: Jill Wellington via Pixabay

Whether you’re growing things indoors or outdoors, there are a few standard supplies you’ll need.

  • Seeds, seedlings, or plants
  • Pots, planters, and/or containers (you pick!) – make sure they give enough room for plant roots
  • Building supplies – if you are building something from scratch based on a tutorial or plan
  • Pre-made vertical plant stand or tower garden – if you’re going with a prefab option
  • Upcycle or recycle supplies – if you’re going with the “green” method
  • Watering can
  • Fertilizer
  • Soil
  • Gloves
  • Trowel
  • Small cultivator

How to Create That Beautiful Vertical Garden

The exact step-by-steps vary a little, depending on the project you choose for your vertical space. The basics, however, remain pretty much the same across the board.

Pick Your Plants

Blue garden bulb shop with plants all around
Image credits: PublicDomainPictures via Pixabay

Before you do anything else, it’s important to decide what plants want to grow. A vertical strawberry planter works for some plants but, for example, not for tomatoes or sunflowers. That’s why it’s crucial to know what you’re going to grow in advance.

Pro tip: If you’re not using an indoor greenhouse and want to grow fresh herbs or indoor plants, make sure they work well for these specific plants.

Decide On Your Location

Image credits: Marzenna Gaines via Pixabay

Next is choosing where you’ll put your garden design. Indoor office space? Check if you can still work around it comfortably. Backyard patio garden? Make sure the plants will receive sufficient lighting and shade for the species you’re planting. (One of the biggest pros for vertical planting is the small space they require!)

The best location could be a blank indoor wall, window boxes you can stack, or recovering old garden bed space no longer viable for planting.

Choose Your Design

Two men examining plants at a vertical farm
Image credits: Daniel Funes Fuentes via Unsplash

Whether you’re going elaborate with a crazy, multi-level plan, going with indoor greenhouse-style gardening setups, or building something simple from scavenged supplies, you need to have the plan in hand first.

Make sure the square feet required for your plans works for your actual indoor or outdoor space.

Gather Supplies

Image credits: congerdesign via Pixabay

Next up is getting together all your supplies. You won’t know the exact building materials until after you’ve chosen your gardening plan. Now, though, you’re ready to get things together for your indoor gardens or tower garden.

Start at the Base

Collection of woodworking tools
Image credits: CentrArredo via Pixabay

Now, you’ll need to either build your base or set it up. It is the larger foundational piece you’ll be using to support your planters. If you’re going with prefab items, you’ll be done with this step fairly quickly. If you’re building from scratch, this will be your longest step.

Plant Those Lovely Plants

A person's hands working with seedlings in a seed starter kit
Image Credits: Zoe Schaeffer on Unsplash

Next, you’ll need to get out the soil and seeds. Plant each plant according to its needs – the correct size pot, the right type of soil, the proper depth, etc. Each plant variety is different, so bear this in mind. And don’t make my previous mistakes of, well, just “going with it”! Plan ahead!

Place them where they belong within the garden, and you’re all set!

Maintain Your Garden Well

Once you’ve made your vertical garden, I highly recommend creating a watering and fertilizing schedule. It helps avoid under-watering or pushing excess water on your plants. I have these as a part of a daily checklist, and I rarely miss a day with keeping those plants happy and healthy. You can also write it out on a calendar, set alarms, or give yourself a checklist on the wall by the door nearest your garden.

Enjoy the bounty of your beautiful garden – the plants will keep producing and the flowers blooming as long as you care for them properly.