If you have a small flat, are short on space in your garden or just interested in growing vegetables upside down (and really, who isn't?), this DIY upside-down tomato planter is spot on.
There are many reasons to grow tomatoes upside down (as well as just for the sheer bizareness of it). Firstly, it's a great space-saver for small gardens and busy windowsills. Secondly, it's way easier - no need to stake the plants as gravity will keep the vines nice and straight, no weeding and fewer diseases thanks to the bagged organic compost you'll be using. Not to mention that you can grow tomatoes indoors all year round. Hello constant tomato supply.
So that's the why's. Here's the how. You'll need:
- A plastic plant pot or small bucket
- A drill (for making holes)
- Some hemp twine/string
- A pair of scissors
- Coffee filter/waxed paper
- Organic compost
- An organic tomato plant or organic tomato seeds. Obvs.
Take your plant pot and cut a circle out the bottom of it for the plant to grow out of.
Turn the pot back the right way up and drill a hole in two opposite sides, in the middle and about an inch from the top.
Thread your hemp twine through the two holes to make a handle to hang your planter. This can be as long or as short as you need, depending on where and what you're hanging it from. Remember it needs to get as much light as possible. And you need to be able to reach it to water it.
Use your coffee filter/waxed paper to cover the hole you cut out the bottom. Leave a small gap for the plant to poke through in the middle. The paper is there to stop the rest of the soil from falling out. As the plant grows, it will easily push through the paper.
Take your organic tomato plant and gently shake the excess soil from its roots. Feed the top of the plant through the hole in the bottom of your pot so that the roots are inside and the plant is hanging out the bottom. You'll probably need to rearrange the coffee filters/waxed paper to make sure it is still covering the hole.
Now simply fill the rest of the pot with organic compost and hang it up somewhere nice and strong. Give it a good watering and wait for the magic to happen.
As an added bonus, you can use the top part of the pot to plant herbs. Double the space saving and double the food.
Make sure you water your plant regularly and keep it in sunlight. Tomatoes need a lot of sun-loving to mature into delicious, juicy redness.
Check out our organic gardening section for all the things you need for a healthy, natural garden.