DIY Vertical Garden (Green Wall) with Automatic Irrigation

Why choose wikiHow?
wikiHow marks an article as reader approved once we have received enough feedback to know that most readers were able to successfully complete the task. In this case, we have also received several testimonials from our readers, who told us how this article truly helped them.

How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles

Four Parts:

Here is a way to maximize your limited porch or garden space by growing vertically. You'll learn to make drip-irrigating garden towers out of recycled 2-liter soda bottles. This method works well for growing flowers, herbs, and small veggies.


Create a Base for the Tower

  1. Cut around the base of one soda bottle.  Make the cut a bit below where the label ends, ideally so that a tiny bit of the bottom curve inward is preserved. This will help the bottles nest tightly together when you stack them. Discard base of bottle
  2. Poke two drainage holes with scissors, on opposite sides, about three inches above the cap.How big? No bigger than the diameter of a Bic pen.
  3. Fill the bottle with potting mix, compost or garden soil, pressing the soil in lightly.Leave an inch of space at the top of the bottle.
  4. Tie the base for your tower onto a supporting structure, such as chain-link fencing or wire, with twine.

Build the Tower Levels

  1. Cut the bottom off a bottle, just as you did to create the base.Remove the cap and discard.
  2. Fill the bottle gently with soil, as for the base, reserving one inch of space at the top.
  3. Nest the bottle firmly atop the base, and tie it on.
  4. Repeat this part 1-3 times, depending on how tall you want your tower to be.

Create a Drip Irrigation System

  1. Cut a bottle in half about midway toward the top.This bottle will be shorter than the others, and will serve as a funnel for watering.
  2. Cut the bottom off a final bottle, just as you did for the base and tower levels.This will be the watering bottle.
  3. Drill a one mm hole in the cap, or pierce with a nail, and replace cap.
  4. Place the funnel atop the tower, nesting it firmly in the soil of the level below.
  5. Place the watering bottle atop the funnel, and (optionally) tie down.

Plant and Grow

  1. Cut three lines in each soil bottle with a box cutter, as if you were drawing the top and sides of a square.(Each side of the square should be about 1.5-2 inches.) Leave the bottom of the square uncut, and instead fold down the flap. This creates a valve to hold the soil and seedling in.
  2. Poke a hole, and insert a small seedling or seeds.
  3. Fill the watering bottle every few days, as needed.
  4. Finished.

Community Q&A

  • Question
    On the funnel bottle do you also put a hole in the cap, or is it removed?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Yes, the funnel bottle has a cap with a hole in it. One professor suggested filling the funnel bottle with a handful of sand to help filter the water.
  • Question
    Would this be good for cantaloupes or other melons?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    No. The fruit is too heavy and will pull the structure down. Similarly, pumpkins and other large varieties of squash also won't do well in a vertical garden. These types of plants prefer to sprawl over long, horizontal distances rather than vertical.
  • Question
    Could I grow strawberries this way using bigger bottles?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    You certainly could; you could use the same format but use gallon milk jugs. Each one can have three or four strawberry plants in it, just cut more "windows."
  • Question
    Do you put holes in all of the other caps except for the first one? How does water get to other bottles?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    You don't put the caps on the bottles except for the first one and the top funnel bottle (which also has a hole in it.)
  • Question
    What was the substrate? Peat based?
    Community Answer
    It doesn't matter, use the soil that suits the plants you're going to grow.
  • Question
    How does the water get to all of the bottles?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    This system uses gravity to water all of the bottles in a chain reaction sort of way. The tower is made from three different types of bottles. The watering bottle at the top drains through a tiny hole in the cap into the tower bottles in the middle, which have soil and no caps. Each of those drain through the open cap holes into the tower bottles below it. Finally, the lowest tower bottle drains into the base bottle, which has a cap on the bottom to keep the soil in, but also has a few holes on the sides to allow for proper drainage so your plants do not drown.
  • Question
    What can I grow, apart from lettuce and herbs?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Anything small that won't overflow the bottles with roots or break it due to weight. If you scroll down to tips, it has a list of great suggestions.
  • Question
    What can I do with excess marigold flowers?
    Community Answer
    Turn it into compost. Basically, you let it rot and then mix it into the soil of other plants. It gives them nutrients. Go to the article on How to Compost for more information.
  • Question
    Is there any concern about chemicals leaching out of the 2 liter bottles?
    Community Answer
    You're right, chemicals might leach into the soil and poison the plants. If you're concerned, line the bottles with something.
Ask a Question
200 characters left
Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered.
  • If the watering bottle ceases to drip, check the drainage hole in the cap for clogging.
  • Try adding a handful of sand to the watering bottle to slow the drip rate and allow more gradual and efficient watering.
  • Wondering what to plant? This method can work for growing smaller veggies such as lettuce, arugula, dandelion greens, beets, radishes, beans, or peas. Also try various herbs or medicinal plants (aloe, parsley, mint, basil, oregano) and flowers (marigolds and zinnias do very well).

Things You Will Need

  • 5 or more 2-liter soda bottles
  • Box cutter or exacto knife
  • Scissors
  • Twine or baling wire (about 3 feet)
  • Chain link fence, wire frame, or other supporting structure
  • 3 or more seedlings, or seeds for 3+ plants

Made Recently

Did you try these steps?
Upload a picture for other readers to see.
Upload error
Awesome picture! Tell us more about it?

Related wikiHows

Article Info

Featured Article

Categories: |

Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 131,052 times.
Did this article help you?
of readers found this articlehelpful.
690 votes - 95%
Click a star to add your vote
95% of people told us that this article helped them.
Views: 131,052

Ty Bigger

Jan 2, 2019

"I like being able to repurpose something that most people see instantly as trash. And turning it in to somethingbeautiful and kind to Mother Nature is one of the best things we can do to give back to this beautiful earth. Thank you for spreading knowledge like this with the world. May it inspire more of us to reuse more things like this instead of throwing them away. "

Gavin Holmes

May 31, 2019

"I had seen this in a YouTube video but could not remember how to fill the space at the top of each successivebottle before the next was inserted. I see now that there is an air space between the wall of the lower bottle and the neck of the bottle inserted above it."

Namratha K.

Apr 27, 2019

"I always like trying new things. I was quite excited about vertical gardens and always wanted to make one. Thisarticle is my first guide to start. I'm looking forward to make a beautiful one. I would like to know the best plants that suit this system."
Rated this article:

Noddy Brooks

Apr 18, 2019

"I was left with 3 pallets the builders never came back for. I found instructions for making vertical planters frompallets, came across the soda bottle instructions, and have amalgamated the two. My planter with bottles attached looks lovely."

Kelly Lagare

Apr 6

"I love reading your articles on whatever topic I want to know about. I like the instructions with pictures! Thank

Noddy Brookes

Apr 18, 2019

"Not being a great DIYer, this was simplicity itself. I tried it, and if I can do anyone can, believe me!"
Rated this article:

Sue Wigley

Feb 19, 2019

"I have always had a big veg patch, but now moving to a tiny garden. This might be the answer, thank you."

Rajan Paul

Jun 14, 2019

"Thanks for the description and illustration to start a tower garden."

B. Caarol

Jul 22, 2019

"Fantastic way to plant herbs and veggies on an apartment balcony."

Anna Theron

Feb 14, 2019

"Fantastic idea, clearly explained and illustrated."

Hazel Richard

Feb 22, 2019

"Very interesting, I think I'm going to try it.

Video: How to build a DIY vertical wall garden

How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles
How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles images

2019 year
2019 year - How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles pictures

How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles forecast
How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles forecasting photo

How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles pics
How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles images

How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles new picture
How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles new foto

foto How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles
picture How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles

Watch How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles video
Watch How to Build a Vertical Garden from Soda Bottles video

Forum on this topic: How to Build a Vertical Garden from , how-to-build-a-vertical-garden-from/
Forum on this topic: How to Build a Vertical Garden from , how-to-build-a-vertical-garden-from/ , how-to-build-a-vertical-garden-from/

Related News

7 No-B.S. Weight Loss Tips That Will Actually Help You Lose Weight
Americans need to do better
A Holiday Travel Risk You May Not Know About: Deep Vein Thrombosis
How to Care for Flaming Katy
The best curling wands that’ll give you beautiful waves every time
How To Prep For A Bridal Boudoir Photo Shoot
How to Encourage Giving in Church
Black Friday 2019: All the Apple Watch deals worth knowing about
Arsenal x Lanvin
Amazon y el futuro de la compra online: un espejo para probarse ropa virtual
Easy Escapes: Halkidiki, Greece
Roast Duck Rice Rolls Recipe
As People With HIV Live Longer, Lung Cancer and Prostate Cancer Become More Common
How to Get Rid of a Nickname
BareMinerals and Buxom Create Holiday Gift Sets That Are Too Pretty to Touch

Date: 08.12.2018, 19:00 / Views: 65155