Space-Saving Vertical Hanging Garden

Growing vegetables yourself is an incredibly rewarding activity, but most city dwellers don't have the space. Learn how to grow veggies and herbs urban style, with a DIY project that takes gardening to a new level.

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Vertical Hanging Garden

When even a container garden takes up too much precious real estate, try a vertical hanging garden. A clever way to use a standard shoe organizer is to transform it into a vertical hanging garden that hangs over a sunny wall, door or fence.

What You'll Need:

A wall hanging shoe organizer, assorted potted plants, a watering can, potting soil and a hand trowel

Location, location, location

Find a sunny spot to hang your shoe organizer, like a railing, fence or wall. Make sure it gets at least six hours of sunlight so your plants can thrive.

Choose an assortment of plants

Select several petite plants, either purchased or grown from seed. Here we created a "salsa" garden, which includes determinate or "patio" tomatoes, small peppers and onions, and cilantro. Other plants that work well in this design are lettuce and most herbs, such as basil or mint.

Take out the plants

Remove the plants from their pots. Gently squeeze the pot before attempting to remove the plant. This should loosen the plant up and allow it to slip out without much trouble.

Plant TLC

Loosen the plant roots and dirt, especially if your plant is a bit root-bound.

Plant gently

Plant each of the plants gently into shoe pockets.

Plant in every other pocket

You can fill each pocket of the organizer, but to allow your herbs and other plants room to grow, it's best to skip every other pocket.

Alternate rows

Alternate the shoe pocket you start on for each row so that they have more room to grow vertically as well.

Position is Key

Plant tomatoes on the bottom, since they grow the fastest and will lean down as the tomatoes grow through the summer.

Herbs, such as basil or parsley, are a safe bet for the top row of your garden.

Include marigolds in the mix

To ensure pollination, tuck two small marigold plants in your hanging garden.

The marigolds will help woo bees and beneficial insects to your hanging garden, as well as add a pop of color.

Add soil

Add potting soil as needed to give the plants enough dirt to grow in.


Water from the top down, gently.

Check plants daily

Check your plants daily to make sure they have enough water, and keep an eye out for pests. Since your organizer will not retain a ton of water, make it somewhere accessible so you can get to it easily and water it often.


Nothing tastes better than a tomato you grew yourself, cut from the garden and sliced onto your favorite sandwich.