Friday, May 1, 2009

Hanging Tomato Plant

It's been quite a while since the last time I posted any new projects. Like I said, sometimes life just gets in the way. Also, I noticed I was writing mostly about food... so I was thinking of another project to post about. So, I came up with this. Yes, it's food related, but it's more about the gardening involved.

Anyway, last year I saw some plans on upside down tomato plants which I decided to try. It worked out pretty well, and it was quite interesting watching the plant actually grow. The plant actually figured out which direction was up, and started growing upwards before gravity hit and it became more of a hanging plant that you'd expect. This year, I decided to try a slightly different approach. I wanted to try to grow more than just one plant in the same bucket. This also made it much easier to plant than a completely upside down plant. Here's the outcome. I just planted it, so obviously no tomatoes yet, but hopefully I'll be able to give you updates on how it goes thru the growing season.

Alright, so I'll show you what I did.


- Tomato plants. (For this one, I used 4 that just started growing in my garden (yeah, I didn't really plant them this year so I have no clue what kind they are)
- potting soil
- screen material
- bucket
- a place and some kind of contraption to hold the bucket up. It could get heavy, so make it sturdy.

How to:

1. First drill holes into an empty bucket. I'm trying it out with a cat litter bucket because it has somewhat flat sides. Drill a hole on all 4 sides, and another one in the bottom for drainage. I used a door hole drill bit.

2. Place a small piece of screen material on the bottom and add soil up to the level of the holes on the side.

3. I created small braces using more screen material (around 1.5" x slightly bigger than the circumference of the drilled out holes). I stapled the screen material to make a cylinder that would fit the drill hole. I placed the plant thru the screen cylinder and the screen cylinder thru the drill hole, then filled up the space within the cylinder with some potting soil. The tomato plant in the picture looks a little droopy, but I think it was mostly just shock of the plant. I kinda yanked it out of the ground and stuck it here. It didn't like that much, but as you'll see later, once it gets acclimated in the bucket, the plant perks back up.

4. Do Step 3 with the other 3 holes. Then fill up the rest of the bucket with soil.

5. Hang up the plant. This one will be left with your imagination... :-) But make sure to put it in a place you'll be able to water it, and also a place that won't be too low that it'll get eaten by jumping dogs... yes, it's possible.

That's it... just remember to water it and hopefully we'll all have tomatoes in the coming months. :-) As you can see here, the plants are already looking better.

Here are some pictures of the upside tomato plant from last year.


Captain Monkeypants said...

This is cool- I've seen these advertised but was skeptical of if the tomatoes actually grew downwards but now I have the evidence and a much more economical method for growing them this way. I will have to try it- i love fresh tomatoes!

Fe said...

Yeah, it worked really well last year. Tho, I did find Linc standing up on his hind legs trying to pull tomatoes off of the plant near the end of last year. Another great thing is that the snails can't make their way up there. Us: 1, Snails: 0

Gravity Gardener said...

Container or bucket gardens are pretty easy to get started with.

Nice Pics.

I created an upside down bucket planter within 10 minutes.

It only cost be a $1.50 and is working nicely. You can take a look at my step by step pictures if interested.

Gravity Gardener.. 

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