Edible garden design

Seeing as this is around the time you should be planting your strawbs I thought it timely to write about this vertical strawberry planter I made a few months back. Instead of writing about it straight away I thought it would be better to test it first so have waited until it was established, yielding fruit and can advise on where I would do things differently.

After I built this, I found a version for sale at a major garden retailer so you can just go and buy one if you can’t be bothered making it but they’re pretty easy to make.

You will need:

  • An electric drill with a hole cutting bit that will cut a 5 – 7cm hole
  • A 2 or 3mm drillbit for the watering pipe
  • A length of PVC downpipe 100mm or 150mm diameter. (The length will = the height of the unit)
  • End cap for the downpipe
  • A narrower diameter (15mm or thereabouts) length of downpipe for watering. Make it about 8 – 10cm longer than the downpipe. If you have a pressurised irrigation system, you can use a length of soak hose instead
  • A cork
  • A knife
  • Duct tape
  • A length of geotextile (or hessian would do) for wrapping the watering pipe
  • Twine for tying the fabric to the watering tube
  • Good fertile soil (test it if you can – strawbs prefer it slightly acidic)
  • 1 litre or so of coarse gravel
  • Strawberry plants (I used a mixture of different varieties)
  • A few companion plants (nasturtiums or marigolds)
  • Large tub or box (to stand unit in whilst filling)
  • Fixing collar or ties

Parts and tools for the strawberry tower. Chickens not necessary!










Step 1: Cutting

Decide on length of unit and cut the tower tube and watering tube accordingly. Don’t forget to make the watering tube 8-10cm longer! I made mine the height of the outside staircase outside as it gets pretty good sun there and the rails give me something to secure the unit to.

Step 2: Drilling the watering tube

Drill vent holes in watering tube. Only drill these in the top 2/3 of the tube as the water will run down to the bottom plants. If you put holes all the way down the upper planter won’t get quite enough water as it will all rush out the lower holes. If you think you will do a good job of capping off the base end of the tube, you can put one small hole at the bottom so it doesn’t go anaerobic in there.

drilling the watering tube for the strawberry tower

Drilling the watering tube for the strawberry tower.









Step 3: Completing the watering tube

Cut the geotextile or hessian to the shape that will cover the holes in the watering pipe. You don’t want roots getting in there and clogging it up.

Then carefully with a knife, whittle down the cork til it fits the end of the watering tube. Now seal it off with duct tape (You don’t want this coming apart whilst you assemble/plant the unit!)

the completed watering tube

The completed watering tube prior to insertion into the strawberry tower. Cork has been attached and twine holding geotex in place.








Step 4: Cutting the holes in the tower

Cut the holes in the tower tube. Remember that one side will face the wall so only put holes on the surfaces that will get sunlight. I made 3 rows of holes and staggered them with holes about 20cm depth apart vertically. Leave the last 20cm intact with no holes. Some of this will be a reservoir of the lower level plants.

drilling holes for strawberries in PVC tube

drilling holes for strawberries in PVC tube








Step 5: Filling

Place the large container against the wall – a corner is best so the tube is less likely to fall over. Place end cap over the base of the tube (I didn’t seal mine so I can dissemble the unit and make modifications if necessary.) Insert watering tube then fill the bottom 10 cm with coarse gravel.

planting the strawberry tower

I recommend positioning the box in a corner so you have both hands free to plant and fill the tower













Step 6:  Planting: For the lowest hole I recommend planting a companion, less incentive for pests to climb up. If you are using stoloniferous varieties (those strawberries that spread with runners along the surface) you can leave a few gaps in the lower holes. As the runners cascade down you can poke them into these vacant spaces. Saves a few bucks, huh? When filling, I found it easiest to pour the soil from the top and poke the plants in the holes. Make every 6th one a companion.

Step 7: Location:

Once it’s planted find make sure when moving it that you hold it with one hand under the endcap if it’s not fixed. (Nothing like watching your plantings all shoot out the end to remind you of this necessity.) Secure it with your chosen fixings.

freshly planted strawberry tower in position

freshly planted strawberry tower in position












Watering: You will need to do this daily in warmer weather. Vertical units do require vigilant watering. The last thing you want is for it to dry out!

 strawberry tower with established strawberries

a few months later, the planter is almost invisible!













Handy tip. If you are noticing ants farming aphids on your strawberries, locate their path then smear some orange/citrus oil around the unit at this point. Stops them in their tacks!

215 Responses to “How to make a vertical strawberry tube planter”

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Jen,

      It will depend on how big the diameter if the pipe is as you will be limited by soil fertility.

      My inclination would be to place the soil after summer and replace any plants that are not performing. I would plant running strawbs up top and bush varieties lower down so you can just poke the runners into any holes left by plants that don’t survive the transplant process.

      So far the planter has been yielding steadily a few strawbs a day for many months. You have to remember to keep watering and feeding it and the odd handful of compost in the top when you notice things subsiding.

  1. James Mann

    That’s a pretty cool idea. I have a raised bed I grow strawberries in. I think it would look really good with one of those on each corner. Thanks for the idea.

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Thanks James.

      I have thought about using them like that. The good thing is you can have them running down into the soil if you desire, worms could access the towers.

      Send pics if you go and do it- all the best 🙂

  2. Lane

    my everbear strawberries have overwintered in my raised/covered SqFt garden for 2 winters (zone 7) but I hate how they take over, and i really don’t have quite enough sun there, so this will solve 2 problems and I can’t wait to set it up…. my question is, do you keep them overwinter? do you move the pole, or do you replant for winter? was thinking i could just lay the pipe horzontal in the covered bed (i don’t really grow anything in winter) but that would be heavy. thoughts?

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Thanks for your question, Lane. As I am in Sydney Australia Where winters are very mild – I just leave it as is. It would probably serve you well if you get heavy snow- to perhaps unplant and then refresh the soil and plant again in spring. If it were me I would make two or three so I could experiment with leaving in situ and laying one down as you suggest and un/replant.

      Let us know how you go so others can benefit from your learnings 🙂

  3. Crystal Drake

    Do you think you could use this with squash? Last year it took over, but the stem near the ground doesn’t get that big. Just curious…as you probably can tell…not a very good gardner, but I’m learning all the time! Thanks for the great idea.

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Crystal,
      That’s an interesting idea. If you were to use a wider diameter tube it might just work but bear in mind that they are a very heavy feeder so if you have other fruiting plants in there they may suffer. Let us know how it goes 🙂

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Sandra,

      You absolutely can! I made one and put a wormfarm in a side hole (signup on the RSS for when I eventually post that design) If you are making it really big it might pay to put wheels on the pot. The one I made is in a half winebarrel. Good luck 🙂

      • Joe

        I love the wheels idea, i need pictures of all these great innovations! I am so execited to try this in my berkley ca wine barrels!

  4. WildBill

    Looks like a neat way to garden vertically but I have to wonder how “green” it is using PVC plastic tubing. Perhaps a minimal amount if it were recycled material. Do you have any suggestions for other materials that are, perhaps, greener” I was thinking of maybe doing this using black locust boards. Copper or aluminum for the watering tube. Any thoughts?

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Bill,

      Wherever possible I use recycled as I have a place nearby which often has some. As for other materials I did see a cool aquaponics system using planks assembled into vertical rectangular “tubes” which looked great.

  5. Mark

    I’ve read that PVC is quite toxic. Is there a risk that the chemicals in the PVC will leach into the soil and into the plants? I’m not trying to be a party pooper. I like the idea, just want to know if the PVC is safe.

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Mark,

      The main risks with PVC is during it’s manufacturing. Subsequently there is risk if you heat it (releases a gas) and cutting it (the dust isn’t so good) so care must be taken to wear as\ mask and goggles when cutting (which should be always the case no matter what the material). After that it is inert according to the reading I have done. It is a very common product in the plumbing industry here (Australia) with most water being brought to the household in same tubes. Thanks for your comment 🙂

    • Kathy

      If you are in USA, your water is more than likely coming through PVC pipes. I would be surprised if there was a hazard using it in this application.

  6. Vera

    Hey, My husband grows hay and wraps it for cattle feeding in winter, the rolls come on these hard pvc type black centers, I have been collecting these thinking I could surely use them for something. They are only around 3 ft long, but thinking of doing this for some flowers, maybe put them in the middle of a large pot and plant around and into the pipe, Thanks for the idea.

    • Linda

      You can also cut the pipe in different lengths paint them what colour you like and strap them together and they are like a sculpture with plants.

  7. henry

    Thanks for a great idea I just finished mine but i made my one out of bamboo to give it more of a natural look .

  8. Rebecca

    Try a larger water tube & add chopped kitchen scraps and red wrigglers to the tube. The worms will go to work on your scaps & leak compost & castings into your main planter during your regular watering. Also,some worms will ‘escape’ into the main pot through the water holes you drilled. You get rid of kitchen scraps, have very happy worms & your plants will be ecstatic will be thrilled!

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Rebecca, Yes I have used that same approach in wine barrels (see elsewhere on my blog) to good effect but I don’t think the worms would appreciate the daily drownings caused by watering. I think maybe “vertigation” may be a better approach.

  9. Ruslan

    Thank you for your post! i tried to make the same construstion, and when i tried watering i discover that only low part will get enought water. So i would reccomend to drill holes for watering only on 1st 10 cm of the watering pipe.

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Ruslan, Did you try watering straight into the top as well as the watering tube? Mine works fine if I water both from the top and the watering tube but I will add some holes higher up as that will no doubt help. Thanks for the feedback!

    • Gary Braker

      I had trouble for years with deer until a friend said try “Irish Spring Soap” I cut it into cubes and drill a hole for a string and hang them all around on plants the deer like. No more problem.

    • SandyB

      Was visiting a garden nursery this spring and saw all these bags, actually women’s hose, hung around. Ask the nursery owner what they were for and she said to keep the deer away. They were so numerous they were about ready to take over. She filled the hose with MILORGANITE and it has worked for her. She hasn’t had a problem since. I understand it’s good for organic gardening as well.

  10. Terry

    Thanks for the level of details. What are your thoughts on growing pickling cucumbers in this manner? And also your thoughts on mixing like strawberries at top half and cucumbers at lower half? It would be on a 2.1 meter pipe from ground up with 1 meter buried.

  11. Barbara

    I am so doing this over the weekend! I’ve got two strawberry plants from my csa. Can I just pop in marigold/nasturtium seeds here and there or should they be transplants? I don’t really have any place I can secure it to, now a wall i can set it up against – maybe I could put inside another container with drainage holes and fill the outer container with rocks to secure it so it doesn’t fall over? Thanks so much!!

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Barbara, you can do that for sure or drive a starpicket into the ground and secure to that. I have used a wine barrel to hold one and it works very well.

      I would favour young seedlings rather than seeds as you need something with a rootball to hold the soil in place and not fall out with watering. Try and keep your drilled holes small so that it’s just the collar of the stem coming through and not as much space as I had as you tend to loose a bit of soil that way.

  12. Ted Ben

    Hello! I’m in Brazil, in Sao Paulo. My Garden in Autumn and winter takes no sun. Could I plant strawberries without the abundant sunshine?

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Ted, sadly no, you need a decent amount of sun for fruiting plants and vegetables. You could grow something else in it like spinach and herbs. They need less but do require some sun

  13. Michelle

    I am in the process of making verticle garden in the same way, only I have sourced some cheap second hand 235mm PVC tubes – They are huge! I am going to plant a variety of herbs, veggies and fruits (mainly to feed our 3 pet Beared Dragons). Do you have any suggestions as to what would work best in these together and should I plant different plants in different tubes (I have 4 x1.5m)? Thanks 🙂

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Michelle,

      Well I would probably stick with growing similar plants in each tube so for instance italian type herbs in one (as they all like similar soil conditions) and put the ones that like the least water at the top and the ones who like more water down lower just like you would plant a herb spiral. For fruit and veg I would do the same but as you would a rotation bed system so you grow families together like solanums in one, brassicas in another etc.

      Good luck and let us all know how it goes!

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Michelle,

      I would treat them like you would a rotation garden bed system and grow like with like. So grow italian herbs in one as they like similar soil conditions, placing the drier habit dwellers at the top (rosemary) -just like you would if you were planting a herb spiral. With the others plant families together so solanums (tomatoes, chillies etc) in one, brassicas in another and so on.

      I don’t know what bearded dragons eat but with a bit of research it could be a fun experiment. Be sure to come back and tell us how it went!

  14. Greg Lemmon

    sound like a great ideal think ill make some of them will let yall know how it goes

      • Greg Lemmon

        going to also do other vegs also will keep in the loop

      • Karl

        Chicago here. I covered the planting holes with painters tape to hold the dirt in as I set it up, then removed it as I started planting. I’m a big fan of square foot gardening since I’m a city dweller. I used the recommended soil mix of 1/3 peatmoss, 1/3 vermiculite, and 1/3 blended compost. I planted 23 strawberry plants in a five foot section, with one foot buried. In additon, I only drilled the planting holes at 2 inches and included a cap on the top with another hole drilled in to allow access to the watering tube. I figure both will help with maintaining water. One last tip, clip some of the root ball of your transplants to encourage growth when planting.

  15. Strawberries | DGLIKES

    […] option for homes without the space for a garden or with unsuitable soils, such as heavy clay. To build a planter from PVC you will need the following materials:  an electric drill with a hole cutting […]

  16. fe2h2o

    Ooh! Assuming I could work out getting them to stand, we could make these _into_ a fence!

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    • Urban GreenSpace

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  19. Strawberry Vertical Garden Made From PVC Tubes » Banoosh

    […] To build a planter from PVC you will need the following materials:  an electric drill with a hole cutting bit that will cut a 5 – 7cm hole, a 2 or 3mm drillbit for the watering pipe, a length of PVC downpipe 100mm or 150mm diameter, end cap for the downpipe, a narrower diameter (15mm or thereabouts) length of downpipe for watering. Make it about 8 – 10cm longer than the downpipe. […]

  20. Alicia Kessinger-Bader

    Hello, Urban Green Space Man. Please answer four questions:
    I had problems with slugs in my strawberry patch this past summer. I found that smearing lube grease around the lip of the planter helps prevent infestation. (It works best if the grease is refreshed after a rain or on a weekly basis.) Would you recommend using lube grease around the bottom & openings of the tube or do you have another method?
    Should I add a few earthworms to the soil to keep it healthy?
    And how do you fertilize?
    How often?
    Thanks for the plans,instructions & your response to my inquiries.
    Warm Regards,

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Great questions and apologies for the delay.
      So I would use a copper tape around the base of the unit rather than some kind of petroleum based product. Copper tape is very unpleasant for those slimey characters!
      You could add worms if you like – I have made a modified tube which features another tube connecting with the vertical tube on an angle. I use this to feed worms so its a wormtower with herbs or whatever growing above. Yes I would liquid fertilise every week at a diluted rate – feed lightly and often as they say.
      I would also replace the soil every year and replant.

      Happy gardening!

    • Bonnie

      I make slug traps from a 1 liter soft drink bottles. Sprite or 7Up work great and are easy to camouflage under the leaves but clear bottles work as well. Cut the top 1/3 off and invert back into the base of the bottle. Tape it in place, add some beer or slug/snail bait. The pests crawl in but are unable to escape the trap. Beer is safer than baits but it’s really a personal choice. When the trap is full just toss in garbage. Happy gardening.

  21. Nick Borneman

    I hate to ask a simple question that may be obvious to some but it seems to be omitted in the instructions and I am very to gardening let alone this vertical gardening technique. How do you water this vertical tube ? Does it tie into a hose or does it use some capillary effect?

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Nick,

      The central tube is designed for hand watering but future when building this again I would use dripline and connect to an irrigation system. Thanks for your question

      • Didier angelique

        bonjour Urban, une petite question, le gravier rosier je le met au fond du tuyau de plantation ou du tuyau d’ arrosage ? merci pour votre réponse.

      • Urban GreenSpace

        Bonjour Didier! My French is not good and Google’s isn’t much better can you try asking the question again in a different way? Merci 🙂

  22. Maak zelf een aardbeientoren | Nudge blogt

    […] Gaten in een PVC-buis Er zijn heel veel varianten gemaakt met brede PVC-buizen, je vindt er een aantal op moestuinforum.nl. Iets meer kluswerk, maar goed te doen. Zo kun je zelfs in één vak van je vierkante meter moestuin een heel bed aardbeien zetten. Ruben gebruikte bijvoorbeeld een PVC-rioolbuis van 12,5cm diameter. Aan drie zijden boorde hij gaten met een doorsnee van zo’n 4 cm, zo’n 15 cm schuin boven elkaar. Een uitgebreide (engelse) handleiding vind je op Urbangreenspace. […]

  23. Anthony Thompson

    Just a suggestion. If u put 2 or 3 screws in the end cap it will not come off until you want it to.

  24. CSiguie

    With many thanks, here is a small contribution under the form of a translation into French for French-speaking gardeners:

    Comment fabriquer sa tour à fraises ?

    Comme nous voici à peu près arrivés au moment de planter vos fraises il m’a semblé qu’il était temps d’écrire au sujet de ce planteur vertical à fraises que j’ai réalisé il y a deux ans. Mais plutôt que d’écrire à ce sujet j’ai pensé qu’il serait préférable de le tester en premier. C’est pourquoi j’ai attendu jusqu’à sa mise en œuvre suivie de la récolte de fruits de façon à pouvoir mieux vous conseiller et vous recommander d’éventuelles adaptations.
    Après avoir construit ce modèle, j’en ai trouvé une version en vente auprès d’une jardinerie bien connue. Vous pouvez donc aisément vous en acheter un, si vous n’avez pas envie de vous embêter à le confectionner par vous-même. Cet assemblage est assez aisé cependant.
    Outillage nécessaire :
    • Une perceuse électrique équipée d’un anneau de découpe circulaire, pour trous de 5 à 7cm,
    • Un foret de 2 ou 3 mm trépan pour la conduite du tuyau d’arrosage
    • Un tuyau d’écoulement en PVC de la longueur de l’ensemble, brut ou repeint à la couleur de votre choix, d’un diamètre de 100 ou 150 mm,
    • Un capuchon pour l’extrémité fermée du tube,
    • Un tuyau d’écoulement en PVC 8 à 10 cm plus long que l’ensemble, et d’environ 15 mm de diamètre. Un tuyau poreux peut aussi faire l’affaire. Si vous disposez d’un système d’irrigation sous pression (goutte à goutte), vous pouvez aussi utiliser une longueur de tuyau dérivée au même effet,
    • Un bouchon de liège,
    • Un couteau,
    • Du ruban adhésif,
    • Une longueur de géotextile (ou de la toile de jute en remplacement) pour envelopper le tuyau d’arrosage,
    • De la ficelle pour attacher le tissu au tube d’arrosage,
    • Un bon sol fertile (à tester au préalable si vous le pouvez – les fraises préfèrent un sol légèrement acide),
    • 1 litre ou deux de gravier grossier,
    • Plants de fraises (j’ai utilisé pour ma part un mélange de différentes variétés),
    • Quelques plantes assorties (capucines et soucis),
    • Une grosse boîte, pour retenir le tube lors de son remplissage,
    • Des colliers ou liens de fixation.

    Détail des pièces et outils nécessaires à la confection de la tour à fraise.

    Étape 1 : Découpe du tube principal
    Évaluez la longueur idéale de la tour et découper le tube principal en fonction. Ne pas oublier que le tube d’arrosage le dépassera de 8 à 10cm… Le mien fait la hauteur de la rampe de mon escalier situé dans un emplacement ensoleillé et la rampe de ce dernier me permet de le fixer.

    Étape 2 : Forage du tube d’arrosage
    Percez des trous d’aération et d’écoulement tout le long du tube d’arrosage. Ne les percez toutefois qu’aux 2/3 du tube en partant du sommet. L’eau finira par s’écouler jusqu’aux plantes du fond. Si vous percez de trous l’ensemble du tube d’arrosage, l’eau se précipitera dans la partie inférieure, de sorte que la partie supérieure en manquera. Si vous préférez refermez la base du tube, prévoyez un petit trou pour éviter toute anaérobie à l’intérieur.
    Photo : forage du tube d’arrosage

    Étape 3 : Équipement du tube d’arrosage
    Couper le géotextile ou la toile de jute de façon à recouvrir l’extérieur des trous du tube d’arrosage, et éviter le développement de racines qui viendraient les obstruer.
    Rogner ensuite soigneusement le bouchon avec un couteau jusqu’à ce qu’il s’adapte bien au bout du tube d’arrosage. Retenez-le temporairement à l’aide d’un ruban adhésif, afin qu’il ne se désolidarise pas au cours de cette phase d’assemblage.

    Photo : tube d’arrosage prêt pour son insertion dans le tube de la tour à fraises. Le bouchon a été attaché et la ficelle de maintient le géotextile en place.

    Étape 4 : Couper les trous dans la tour
    Coupez les trous dans le tube extérieur de la tour. Conservez à l’esprit qu’un côté sera exposé à un mur : vous n’avez besoin de faire de trous que sur la partie exposée à la lumière du soleil. J’ai fait trois rangées de trous tous les 20 cm environ dans la longueur plus ou moins en quinconce. Prévoir de laisser les 20 derniers cm intacts, sans trous. Cette partie servira de réservoir aux plantes du niveau le plus bas.
    Perçage des trous à fraises dans le tube PVC

    Étape 5 : Remplissage
    Dressez le grand tube à la verticale contre un mur ou un coin de mur pour éviter qu’il ne tombe. Insérez le bouchon à la base du tube (je n’ai pas scellé le mien afin de pouvoir démonter l’ensemble et lui apporter des modifications si nécessaire). Insérer le tube d’arrosage, puis remplir le fond de 10 cm de gravier grossier. Il est préférable de placer la boîte dans un coin pour garder les mains libres, afin de planter et de garnir la tour

    Étape 6 : Plantation
    Au niveau du trou le plus bas, je vous conseille vivement de planter une plante assortie, qui dissuade les insectes nuisibles de grimper le long du tube. Si vous utilisez des variétés de fraises stolonifères qui se propagent en surface par leurs extensions naturelles, vous pouvez laisser quelques trous inférieurs vacants. Vous pourrez remplir aisément ces espaces par la suite. Pour le remplissage proprement dit, j’ai trouvé plus facile de verser la terre par le haut et de faire entrer les plantes une à une dans les trous. Planter une plante assortie tous les 6 trous.

    Étape 7 : Situation
    Une fois les plantations finies gardez bien votre main sous le bouchon si celui-ci n’est pas fixé lors de vos déplacements (le résultat serait sinon désastreux pour vos plantations toutes fraîches). Fixez-le au besoin avec deux vis.
    Votre tour à fraise est en place.

    Arrosage : Vous aurez besoin de le prévoir tous les jours par temps chaud. Les tubes verticaux exigent une certaine vigilance dans l’arrosage vigilant. Sa surface d’échange thermique est large et vous ne souhaitez pas voir le tube se dessécher.
    Fréquence des arrosages
    Le fraisier est une plante très gourmande en eau qui demande à se développer dans une terre humide jusqu’en novembre. Dès la plantation arroser les fraisiers à raison d’une fois par semaine. Ne surtout pas négliger cette étape si le temps est sec. Ne pas laisser la terre sécher entre deux arrosages.

    Au bout de quelques mois plus tard, la tour est recouverte par la végétation.
    Conseil pratique. Si vous remarquez des fourmis entrainer des pucerons sur vos fraises, repérez leur voie de passage et répandez-y un peu d’huile essentielle d’orange ou de citron. Vous stopperez ainsi leur progression.

    Source : https://urbangreenspace.wordpress.com/2012/04/28/how-to-make-a-vertical-strawberry-tube-planter,

  25. Save Space In Your Home Or Garden By Creating Vertical Planters

    […] Love strawberries? Well who doesn’t? But do you how to make a vertical strawberry tube planter? You need a watering pipe, PVC downpipe, an end cap, a cork, duct tape, geotextile, soil, gravel, ties and strawberry plants. Cut the tubes and drill the vent holes. Cut the geotextile to cover the holes and add gravel, soil and plants.{found on urbangreenspace}. […]

  26. Ida

    Why not give measurements in inches and feet so we Americans can make this without translating the numbers?

    • Beth

      In American measurements (not exact, done in my head) You will need:

      An electric drill with a hole cutting bit that will cut a 2-3 inch hole

      A 2 or 3mm drillbit for the watering pipe – these come metric in the U.S.

      A length of PVC downpipe 4-5 inches in diameter. (The length will = the height of the unit)

      A narrower diameter (3/4 inch or thereabouts) length of downpipe for watering. Make it about 3-4 inches longer than the downpipe. If you have a pressurised irrigation system, you can use a length of soak hose instead.

      A length of geotextile (or hessian would do) for wrapping the watering pipe – this is the black landscape fabric at the garden store.

      4-5 cups or so of coarse gravel

  27. Darlene

    I’m not a real gardener, but getting curious and would like to start gardening. I love strawberries and thought it would be a good place to start, where can I find everything I need to know? Such as, time to start in my area, what variety, basic info. & tips.

  28. NonazArk

    I pinned this awesome DIY tutorial – thank you!! I am going to do a ‘wall’ of six of these, My only hack is I’m going to thread a wide wick through the center of the watering tube, and set each into a bucket so that I have a larger reservoir to keep the plants watered. I think it’ll be pretty sweet!! Thanks so much for this great tutorial – keep’em coming!! http://www.pinterest.com/pin/254523816415625338/

  29. Rhonda

    I don’t know if I’ll get a reply since the last comment was May 2014, but I’m hoping.
    I’m a beginner at gardening and bought strawberry plants last year. I wanted to replant them this year in a way that didn’t take up as much space when I ran across your idea. I loved it and had my husband make it for me. Today we got it together with the plants and ran into a problem with watering. It was running out of the bottom so I had to turn the water down to a trickle. How much should the water be on?

  30. Wizardseye

    Curious to know if you still have this system up and running? What changes would you consider making?

  31. sparky80908

    Reblogged this on Garden of Beauty and commented:
    Now that spring is upon us, here’s a great idea for strawberries on the deck or any other small space.

  32. Rex

    This us an awesome idea. I’m definitely going to do this. One suggestion though; don’t use PVC, it’s toxic :/http://www.healthychild.org/easy-steps/reduce-your-use-of-pvc-in-plastics-and-other-household-products/

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Rex, Yep the old/original PVC was bad stuff but the new formulation is fine. (You’re probably drinking water from plumbing made from it.)
      It’s good practice to put on a mask when sawing it and drilling it as the dust from it isn’t great but leaching isn’t an issue once it’s in place.

  33. Tracey Kendall

    I recently tried this with geraniums. To date I have lost 12 plants and it looks like I’m up for another 12. I have found that once you put the conduit into the pipe it leaves very little room for the plants so you have to really squash them into the hole and its too traumatic for the small plants and they die. When I water them the soil falls out of the holes and makes a mess down the pipe so I put a bit of mesh into the hole to try and keep it in but it still makes a mess. I am going to try growing them horizontally and hang the pipes one under the other.

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Tracey, Oh no that’s sad news. This design is really suited to strawberry plants as they have roots that are suited to this kind of container. You could try a wider tube and then insert a geotextile/landscape fabric sleeve. Then slash and X to insert the plant.

  34. Rebecca Sheffar

    This is a good idea and something I’m looking forward to trying in the spring, especially since I love strawberries but can’t always get them.
    I do have a question though, in your list of supplies you have two down pipes of different sizes listed. One is 100/150 mm and the other is 15/? mm, what is the first one for, your instructions and photos didn’t say/show.

  35. Pat Patrick

    I cannot figure out what the cork is for??? sorry if it was explained and I missed it. I am definitely doing this in the spring! As I am in zone 5 I will need to figure out a winterizing solution… Thanks so much for this GREAT Idea!!!

  36. Cathy

    I wonder if I would be able to grow hanging cucumber plants instead of strawberries

  37. Nadine Almberg

    How would these survive winter in Alberta? I have had trouble with winterkill in raised beds with strawberries?

  38. 30+ Creative Uses of PVC Pipes in Your Home and Garden • DIY Tips

    […] A PVC strawberry tower is an innovative and fun way to grow lots of strawberries on limited yard spaces. It also works on a patio or deck where can you grow it on a plant pot. The strawberries are grown vertically, keeping them away from harmful insects on the ground, and collecting less dirt. (Tutorial: Urban Green Space) […]

  39. 45+ Creative Uses Of PVC Pipes In Your Home And Garden

    […] A PVC strawberry tower is an innovative and fun way to grow lots of strawberries on limited yard spaces. It also works on a patio or deck where can you grow it on a plant pot. The strawberries are grown vertically, keeping them away from harmful insects on the ground, and collecting less dirt. (Tutorial: Urban Green Space) […]

  40. 45 Amazing Ideas of Using PVC Pipes in your Home and Garden – Aditya Portal

    […] A PVC strawberry tower is an revolutionary and fun method to develop loads of strawberries on limited yard spaces. It additionally works on a patio or deck the place are you able to develop it on a plant pot. The strawberries are grown vertically, protecting them far from dangerous bugs on the ground, and collecting much less grime. (Tutorial: Urban Inexperienced House) […]

  41. Tallat Zarrin

    It’s an intelligent idea which takes less space and allows everyone to have it in their home👍

  42. Maritza Afanador S

    Gracias x estas informaciones de los diferentes cultivos pero sobre todo este de fresa me encanto..
    Dios los bendiga…
    Maritza Afanador
    Cúcuta Colombia…

  43. Dale G.

    This sounds like a great idea and something I will consider giving a try next season.

    But, I have a question: do you have a whole- sale dealer for the plants because, as I realize, the cost of plants even at a boxed home improvement store is insanely high?

    If I try this idea I would make 3 or 4 about five feet high. With three lines of holes it would take upwards of 75-90 plants. That’s 12-15 flats of six plants.

    But, regardless the idea is unique and problem solving. Cudos to you and thanks for sharing.

    Dale G.

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Dale,
      Sorry for delayed response. Have you tried growing from seed? THat would be waaay cheaper than plants. Another option is bareroot stock. Thanks for your comment!

  44. marshall

    when I tried this I had a problem with the soil settleing down and the plants disappeared inside of the pipe .how did you keep the soil from settleing?

    • Urban GreenSpace

      Hi Marshall, It is tricky. I try and keep the hole as small as possible and am thinking I might try landscape fabric or shade cloth tubes with an X cut to push the plant through. I would be concerned that the landscape fabric would wick the water from the soil though. You could try a heavy clay loam soil around the holes as an idea…?

  45. Mike Griffin

    HI Guys & Gals
    I read all your comments and ideas regarding making a Plastic Pipe Based Strawberry Tower, I have three of these all doing really well. The one comment I noticed was about soil washing out of the planting holes when watering.
    There is a very cheap and easy cure for this and it works, when planting up use Brassica Collars, put them around the stem of the strawberry plant and tuck the outside edge of the collars inside the edge of the planting hole.
    You can get them on Ebay for roughly £2.50 for a 50 collar pack.
    Hope this tip helps


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