As a gardener, you already know that your hobby can be an expensive one, particularly if you are always on the lookout to follow the latest craze with flowering plants. Sure, growing the flowers from seed instead of purchasing the completed project saves money. But, what about the containers themselves?
I’ve had my eye on plant towers that allow you to grow your flowers and herbs vertically. I recently saw a delightful solution that you can make yourself without the labor of cutting and drilling PVC pipe. All you need for this project is some wire fencing (with 2 to 4 inch squares) and some landscape fabric along with the proper tools, like wire cutters, scissors and some protective gloves.
- Choose the container you would like for the base of your plant tower. A heavy pot or bucket with a flat bottom works best.
- Roll your wire into a cylinder that is just large enough to tuck inside the container. The cylinder should fit snugly.
- Unroll the wire fencing and cut it to the desired size with wire cutters.
- Form the cylinder and secure the edges with zip ties or wire.
- Cut the cylinder to the desired height at this time. Although you can use any height you wish, a height of 1 ½ times the height of the container typically works well. Taller towers may topple in the wind.
- Wrap a piece of landscape fabric around the outside of the cylinder so that the edges overlap by an inch or two.
- Cut the landscape fabric to this size.
- Roll the cut fabric and insert it into the wire cylinder, allowing it to unroll against the sides.
- Trim the top of the landscape fabric so that it is two to three inches above the top rim of the cylinder.
- Fold the fabric down over the rim and secure it by punching holes through the fabric and using wire or zip ties to attach it to the cylinder.
- Fill the cylinder with potting media and water lightly to settle the soil.
- Cut X’s large enough to fit the root ball of your plants in alternating squares in the wire fencing. Repeat the process to the bottom of the cylinder, staggering the cuts as you go. Leave the bottom row free of cuts.
- Slip the roots of your seedlings into the holes and secure the soil around the roots of your plants.
- Water to moisten the roots of your seedlings, and keep the soil evenly moist until the seedlings are established.
- Water your tower from the top when the soil feels dry or plants show signs of wilting.