Over the past year I have created a few different versions of garden planters for growing tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers inspired from my daughter watching a Topsy Turvy tomato planter commercial. Here is a quick summary of the different options which you can click the link for full instructions how to build on yourself.
|2 Liter – The Original — This is the one that started it all. Very simple design using a 2 liter bottle covered with duct tape with a hole cut in the side to add soil and water as needed.Pros: Simple to create, dark color helped keep soil warm during the early part of the year, unlike the sibling seedling which I planted in the ground as a control which did not make it.Cons: Really had to keep up on watering, given it had a 2 inch hole in the side water was able to easily evaporate and it did not get the advantage of being watered automatically on raining days/weeks and given I wasn’t watering any other plants forgot about this poor one which led to reduced yields.|
|2 liter — Version 2.0 — This year I wanted something that did not appear as hideous hanging and also took care of the watering issue from the previous version. With this I created a slow drip watering reservoir and used spray paint and skipped the duct tape.Pros: Easy to water through manual or automatic (rain), evaporation is minimized due to small drainage holesCons: At the moment, there are none known. I am happy with this design.|
|1 gallon milk jug (with auto-watering) — I was curious about if the extra 1.799 liters with a larger contain would significantly help yields so I went with this version. Also decided to add an experimental external watering source.Pros: Larger volume of soil, extra watering capacityCons: Keeping the whole thing balanced was a pain, currently have it under control with a couple rubber band but will probably have to be replaced with something more permanent later.|
So there you have the short evolution of my homemade upside down tomato planters all created from materials from my recycling bin. Though if you do not want to make one yourself here are a just a few of the commercial upside down planter versions on the market right now.