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Project Guide

How to Build a Vertical Garden Wall

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Cut and Prep

Measure and cut your lumber. You will need three 2- x 10-inch x 8-foot boards, four 2- x 4-inch x 8 foot boards and sixteen 1- x 4-inch x 8-foot boards. 

  • Cut the 2- x 10-inch boards into ten 11 inch pieces and seven 15 inch pieces. 
  • Cut the 1- x 4-inch boards into 46 pieces that are 30 inches long and 24 pieces that are 3 inches long. 
  • Cut the 2- x 4-inch boards into 14 pieces that are 27 inches long.
Make Growing Crates
  • For each of the five smaller crates, use 3 inch exterior deck screws to attach two of the  two-by-four pieces between two of the 11 inch two-by-ten pieces.
  • Make sure it’s at the lowest point of the two-by-tens and spaced at your discretion.
  • Pre-drill all screw holes through the 30 inch one-by-fours and into the two-by-tens.
  • Leave a ¼ inch gap between the boards. 
  • Screw the one-by-four pieces onto the back and front sides using 1 ½ inch screws. 
  • Follow the same steps as the smaller crates when you build the two larger ones, except use the 15 inch two-by-two pieces as the ends of the crates. 
  • Pre-drill, countersink and then screw on an extra one-by-four panel on each side of the two crates. 
  • For the three side supports of the planter, take one of the 15 inch two-by-tens and four of the 3 inches long one-by-fours.
  • Pre-drill and screw through the one-by-fours.
Staple On Wire Mesh and Weed Barrier
  • Use the  wire cutters to cut the ½ inch gap wire mesh into 9- x 27-inch pieces.
  • Line the bottom of the planters with the cut wire.
  • Use the staples with either a hammer or a staple gun to fix the wire in place. 
  • Cut pieces of a plastic weed barrier (also known as landscape fabric). 
  • Line the entire interior of each crate.
  • Staple landscape fabric into place to protect the wood from moisture and keep potting soil in place.
  • Apply a sealant to the outside of the wood crates.  Make sure it is a food-grade finish to avoid contaminating the soil.

Tip: Plastic sheeting is a good substitute for landscape fabric. Be sure to punch holes in it, so water can drain.

Attach Crates to Fence
  • Pre-stack planter boxes against the fence to determine if it is tall enough to suspend them in the air. 
  • Drill the crates into the two-by-four railing that runs through your fence whenever possible. 
  • Place two of the smaller crates on the ground against the fence and 26 inches apart. 
  • Use 1 ½ inch screws to drill the top crates into the fence. 
  • Place one of the large crates on top of the two smaller crates, straddling them evenly, and screw it into the fence. 
  • Grab the side supports and put them on the outer edges of the small crates and screw them in. This will help give your vertical structure stability.
Add Potting Mix and Plants

Fill the planter crates with potting soil and start planting your vegetables, flowers or ornamental plants like ferns. Your local Home Depot has a variety of potted plants selected for your area or you can shop for live plants here.

Tip: Most quality potted plants come with growing instructions. Be sure to follow guidelines on how deep to plant and how often to water your new hanging garden.