How Much Food Can You Grow in a 26 Inch Space?

garden-tower-2-fully-planted-vertical-gardening-systemWe get a lot of questions and comments from people who want to grow their own food, but have limited space to garden. Today I want to show you an exciting product that can really get you growing in some very tight spaces. The Garden Tower 2 is a vertical garden and composting system that is capable of transforming any balcony, patio, or porch into a fully functioning vegetable garden. The Garden Tower 2 ties together 3 of the most important elements of a successful vegetable garden, all in one compact product. It gives you rich soil to grow plants in, a kitchen scrap composting system, and a worm composting bin – all in one easy-to-use system. You might think of it as an “instant garden.”

One of the biggest problems with traditional container gardening is soil fertility. In a pot, you just don’t get all of the beneficial soil activity that you get in the ground. The Garden Tower 2 solves this problem by putting the worms inside the pot. There is an integrated worm composting system inside the Garden Tower 2. A long tube runs from the top of the tower all the way down to the bottom, and this is where you can compost your fresh, raw kitchen scraps. Add a half a cup of red wiggler worms to the tube each growing season, and those worms will convert your kitchen scraps into fresh organic fertilizer for your growing plants!

The real value of the worms isn’t about the kitchen scraps they eat. Their real value is… well, it’s on the other end of the worm. When the worms have eaten their fill, they will move through the large holes in the compost tube and find their way in to the soil in the planting area. As they move they aerate and stir the soil. And the real key to this whole system is that the worms will poop in your soil. They will leave their castings throughout the tower, keeping the soil freshly fertilized and microbially active at all times.

The Garden Tower 2 allows you to grow 50 plants simultaneously in a very small space. It’s like the ultimate square foot garden, because of its vertical design. The tower holds over 6 cubic feet of soil, but its footprint is only 26 inches. Plants grow quickly in the Garden Tower 2 because they always have access to nutrient-rich water. The water that steeps in the compost tube acts as a sort of “compost tea,” providing your plants with plenty of nutrient to grow quickly and provide you with nutrient-rich food. The tight design of the Garden Tower 2 also creates a warm microclimate that speeds growth, and can even extend your growing season.

Watering is simple and easy. You water the tower through the top of the composting tube. As the water seeps through the compost, it absorbs the available nutrients from the fresh worm castings, and distributes those nutrients to your plants’ roots throughout the soil. Any excess water is collected in a bin at the bottom of the tower, and simply added back in to the top of the composting tube. There’s no electricity. There’s no weeding. It’s simply a great design.

The Garden Tower 2 is made from 100% virgin, recyclable, food-grade plastic. BPA-free, of course. The plastics used are resistant to UV radiation, and should last for at least 7 years in full sun.

This is the perfect gardening system for small spaces. It allows people with only a small balcony to grow an abundance of organic produce each season. This is a great way to get kids interested in gardening. Many schools are using the Garden Tower 2 to demonstrate to children how a large volume of food can be grown in a tiny area. It’s also a great way to keep elderly relatives gardening when they can’t get out to the garden anymore.

As an affiliate of the Garden Tower Project, the [Grow] Network will receive a small percentage of any sales made through this promotion. As always, we sincerely thank you for your support of the [Grow] Network. It is the support of our dedicated members around the globe that allows us to keep working toward our mission of putting “Home Grown Food on Every Table.” The Garden Tower Project has been a reliable sponsor for our ongoing writing contests, and for the 2015 Home Grown Food Summit, and we are pleased to help spread the word about their great product. They are making the Garden Tower 2 available to members of the [Grow] Network for $359.

Click Here to Buy the Garden Tower 2


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  • Alysa W. says:

    I have no problem with space and planted a lot of veggies in my yards, some in hanging pots, or pots up on top of benches and even a few in the ground. With the exception of tomatoes, all have been destroyed by earwigs. I don’t want to use insecticides, but I did try to kill them by putting small bowls filled with vegetable oil next to each plant and it did kill the earwigs off in the hundreds but we still lost everything. Any suggestions?

    1. Michael Ford says:

      Hello Alysa – I’ve had success using diatomaceous earth to control earwigs in containers. Use a duster for good coverage – or just sprinkle it around to cover the soil if you don’t have a duster. You have to re-apply occasionally, and I’ve had the best success when I use DE with a thin layer of gravel on top as mulch. Good luck!

  • Edward Thompson says:

    We have been growing a strawberry tower for 2 years now, the pots cost us $1 per section (at the Dollar Store), and we make ours 10 high. It only gets worms if we add them, but costs a lot less. The base is an oil drain bucket full of quick set cement, and it’s held together with a PVC pipe down the middle which is anchored in the cement. Will see if I can post on my Google Notifications spot.

    1. Michael Ford says:

      Hi Edward – That sounds like a nice set-up you’ve got. We’d love to see pictures of it – might make a great entry in our Writing Contest.

  • Donna Lucy says:

    What types of produce are best for growing in this container? Would it be just short, shallow rooted plants such as greens, onions, strawberries and flowers? Would it be impractical to grow things such as corn, potatoes, carrots, squash, and blackberries? I love the idea!

    1. Michael Ford says:

      Hi Donna – I don’t think this would be a good home for corn, potatoes, or blackberries. But it would be a great container for squash and other vines. You can see some pictures showing different veggies that are doing well here at this link – 50 Plants + Composting in 4 Square Feet.

  • Judi says:

    Great Idea! Unfortunately for those on low income that could really benefit from this, it is way too expensive.

  • Dave says:

    I’m missing something here and I’m very happy to be missing it! I really don’t know anyone who would pay that much for a vertical planter. Oh, wait, the inner city people who are lucky to have balcony space on the 23rd floor? Without any help from me, my son saw this idea, searched on Youtube, then ran over to Home depot and bought 16 5 gallon buckets, some perforated drain pipe and built 4 towers on a Saturday morning a couple of months ago. Plus he bought worms to go in the center pipe. Me? I would have gotten the buckets for free and the dirt and the worms too. Just my 2 cents worth.

  • Mimi says:

    regardless of how much growing space is in this vertical garden, I think $359 is exorbitant. I could never afford that no matter how much I needed it.

  • Carol says:

    How many pockets does the tower have, and are they all the same size or granduated in size?

    1. Michael Ford says:

      Hi Carol – There are 50 pockets in total. 45 of them are on the sides, and those are all the same size. There are 5 bigger pockets on the top.

  • Jana says:

    Good idea – way, way, way too expensive!

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