Get Your Mind Out of the Gutter and Put Your Garden There Instead

"Gutter Garden" photo Courtesy Suzanne Forsling

"Gutter Garden" photo Courtesy Suzanne Forsling

Make your own “vertical veggie garden” with some gutter material and an exterior wall you’re not doing anything with anyway!

The Hack: Use a wall and some gutter material to make a vertical garden where no garden has dared to cling!

“… The idea is essential this: Why not put rain gutters in rows along the wood siding on the sunny side of the house. It might look weird, but that was where all the heat, sun and protection from damage is best. I talked to my husband, Pete, about it and he agreed it was worth a try.

We went to Home Depot and selected some “attractive” brown plastic gutters along with all the required parts so that we could mount them in one long row. (The total length or a row would be about 20 feet). Pete drilled some very small holes in the bottom of the gutters to let excess water drain out after he mounted them on the siding. …”

While this can be a convenient way of making use of unused space, there is the issue of the space needed for the plant’s root systems. Since you are using a six inch by perhaps twenty-four inch space per plant, minus the intermingling of the root systems with their neighbors, the size of your plants will probably be smaller. lettuce roots illustrated with one  foot deliniations Looking at the root development of lettuce, for instance, you will see that the tap root in regular soil goes down beyond three feet!(Click on illustration for better picture and link to text).  This illustration also shows why companion plants nearby also help each other owing to the fact that the root systems would intermingle.  It also raises the question does square foot gardening really make sense?  The confining nature of square foot gardens would inhibit the root systems, and the nutritional needs of the plants as well as their sunlight requirements could make a strong argument for more widely spaced plants that compliment each other (larger sun-loving plants giving shade to nearby lower growing plants that are harvested more frequently, such as lettuce grown on the north side of pole beans, etc.. Succession planting could still easily take place with faster growing crops, and the plants themselves may prove more nutritious with less need of fertilization since the plants would be drawing their nutrition from a wider area.

Original link via LifeHacker

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Vertical Garden Pallet

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Don't Ask, Don't Till

lettuce roots illustrated with one foot deliniations

A Hidden World of Plant Roots

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vertical Garden DIY          Don’t Ask, Don’t Till          Hidden World of Plant Roots

 

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Posted in Fertilizing, Light, Soil, Tangents, Watering Tagged with: , , , ,
2 comments on “Get Your Mind Out of the Gutter and Put Your Garden There Instead
  1. Chris says:

    I am currently doing this but in an interior application…one thing that should be done is to add shielding so rain water running down the side of the house does not end up in the planters, the water will pick up toxins from the roof shingles and paint as it moves along the house.

    • admin says:

      Sadly, this is true, especially with asphalt shingles. This is another reason why we hope to go with a metal roof the next time – hate to see all that water just going down the gutter.

3 Pings/Trackbacks for "Get Your Mind Out of the Gutter and Put Your Garden There Instead"
  1. […] gutter garden designs have suggested anchoring them on the side of your house.  Although this is not a bad option, […]

  2. […] Other gutter garden designs have suggested anchoring them on the side of your house.  Although this is not a bad option, I’d rather not drills holes into my siding or worry about water sitting between the gutters and my siding.  If you rent, I doubt your landlord would be into you screwing a bunch of holes in the siding either. […]

  3. […] Other gutter garden designs have suggested anchoring them on the side of your house.  Although this is not a bad option, I’d rather not drills holes into my siding or worry about water sitting between the gutters and my siding.  If you rent, I doubt your landlord would be into you screwing a bunch of holes in the siding either. […]

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