Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces


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Maud Grainger, Faith in Action Tutor

Fabric Woolly Pockets are just one example.

Resources - Peterson Garden Project

There are also many stackable planters that can be built from the ground up. Plant them up with herbs, salads and strawberries and watch a blank space take on a whole new life. Try making your own by hammering in or hanging from hooks all manner of recycled containers: large food tins with holes punched into the bottom for drainage try painting them for additional interest , rows of window boxes secured one above the other or even pots made from old undergarments as seen at a recent flower show!

Hanging about : As well as growing up from below, many climbing or sprawling edibles can be grown from above and left to hang down. Vine tomatoes are best for this and work well in 'upside-down' planters. Make a hole into a large bucket that's just big enough to allow you to plant up the tomato. The hole must also allow the stem to thicken as the plant grows. Plant the tomato, feeding compost around the rootball and fill to the top of the bucket. Sow or plant at the top shallow-rooters such as lettuce, radish, basil or stump-rooted carrots.

Hang up then feed and water from above while the tomato erupts out from beneath. You can also grow strawberries and other fruiting veg such as peppers and eggplant in this way. The result is literally buckets of produce! Edible divider : Looking to divide up areas of your garden? An edible divider is far more attractive than a solid conifer hedge or artificial alternative — and you can eat it!

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Espaliered fruit trees where the branches run parallel to each other in horizontal rows make excellent natural dividers. Train the trees onto trellis to provide an all-year-round divider and plant the base up with annual vegetables or flowering herbs such as rosemary to keep pollinating insects busy for longer.

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Annual climbing veg such as peas and beans make excellent seasonal screens and have the bonus of being very quick growing. Sound options for supporting them can be found here.

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Archway of delights : Visitors will immediately know you're a passionate grower of all things edible if you plant an edible archway leading up to your front door. Simply plant each archway support with its own climber and watch as over the growing season the archway is consumed by a lush jungle of foliage, pods and fruits. Squashes and beans with colored pods try alternating purple and yellow-podded varieties such as 'Blauhilde' and 'Goldfield' look especially impressive given this treatment. The pods and fruits will dangle down above head height to create quite a visual impact.

Beans with strongly coloured flowers such as the classic 'Scarlet Emperor' are as floriferous as the best of the traditional ornamental climbers — a feast for both the eyes and stomach. Try out a few of these sky-reaching options and see how much more produce you can get from your plot.


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I'd be very interested to learn of your vertical growing experiences, so please share any other ideas for vertical growing below. Climbers and sprawlers A great place to begin to satisfy lofty ambitions is with the vegetables and fruits that naturally climb or can be made to do so with gentle encouragement. Peas, cucumbers, tomatoes, melons, berries, grapes, morning glories, honeysuckle, and wisteria are just a few plants to consider growing vertically.

Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces

Hundreds of varieties of fruits, vegetables, and flowers can be trained to grow up trellises, bamboo scaffolds, wires, garden netting, fencing, arches, arbors, pergolas, hanging baskets, tiered containers, plastic pouches, upside-down planters, maypoles, and of course walls. Green wall champion Patrick Blanc uses PVC foam for his living walls because it is waterproof, light, and it doesn't crack when you drill holes in it for screws, nails, or staples to hold different elements in place.

Space is a huge issue for many gardeners.

With vertical gardening, you only need the bed to be as large as the root system. Even better, weeding, fertilizing, and pest control are greatly reduced, and you'll find vining vegetables are capable of higher yields than bush varieties.

A little bit of space, planning, and planting, and you'll be growing up in no time. Vertical gardening, living walls, and hanging gardens seem up-and-coming, and yet there are written accounts of hanging gardens in Babylon dating back to approximately B. To learn more about planting heirlooms and saving seeds, check out these resources at the Lenhardt Library. Read our Review in Current Books.

Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces
Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces
Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces
Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces
Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces
Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces
Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces Vertical Vegetables & Fruit: Creative Gardening Techniques for Growing Up in Small Spaces

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