With residential lots getting smaller and apartment living on the rise, it’s no surprise that container gardening has been gaining popularity. The desire for a healthier, pesticide-free, organic lifestyle has also led to more people wanting to grow their own food. Pots and raised timber beds are the traditional solution, but almost anything that can hold soil can be used to grow plants. We can make edible container gardening more interesting with these fun and unusual containers that double as garden art!

1. Wheelbarrows

Got an old wheelbarrow lying around? Instead of bringing them to the junk yard, it can be upcycled as a planter for veggies and herbs that don’t need deep soil, such as lettuce, thyme, oregano, basil and chives. You can paint it a bright color for contrast or just leave it as it is, to blend into the garden setting.

2. Old Bathtubs

For bigger shrubs and edibles, you can repurpose bathtubs and plant tomatoes, potatoes, broccoli, sage and even rosemary shrubs. Antique stores or the Habitat for Humanity ReStores might have a nice selection especially if you can find the vintage ones with claw feet.

3. Wagons

Wooden wagons or your kids outgrown Radio Flyer wagons can be home to your edibles as well. You can paint the wooden wagons with stencils to create a shabby chic or country style look. It would be a great activity to get your kids involved in re-purposing their red wagons into an edible fairy garden, too!

4. Wine Barrels and Boxes

A visit to the wine country can mean scoring some wine boxes or barrels from your local winery. Wine barrels are perfect pots for bigger shrubs like blueberries, patio tomatoes and bush beans. Smaller wine boxes can likewise be upcycled to hold herbs such as thyme, oregano, mint, parsley, and even strawberries. These can be placed on your patio table for the freshest herbs and dessert. They look great, too!

5. BBQ Grills

Why not turn that unused old grill into an herb planter or lettuce bowl? The taller height makes for easy picking and can give you a perfect quick dinner salad!

6. Custom Furniture Planters

If you are crafty and handy, incorporating a planter into custom-made outdoor furniture is also another cool idea for edibles. There are instructions online on how to build awesome herb tables using wooden pallets or cedar boards that has a center planting strip or trough for herbs and salad greens. Mint for your mojito? Just pick it fresh from your dinner table!

7. Galvanized Feed Troughs

These are also readily available at the farm store and can hold a lot of soil for anything you want to grow and eat. Vines like peas and cucumber can climb up further back while lower-growing lettuce, carrots, radishes and herbs can grow in front.

8. Kitchen Utensils

Why not use colanders and big steam pots as edible containers? Colanders work great because they already have drainage holes! It is small enough so you can even use it as a hanging container. A colander of fresh salad greens or strawberries looks good, too!

Growing your own vegetables, herbs and fruits even with limited space can be enjoyable and achievable. When choosing a container, do keep in mind that the bigger it is, the happier the plant will be and the less frequent you’ll need to water it. Also, you’ll also need to be able to add holes to make sure it has adequate drainage. Use the right potting mix and be sure to fertilize as nutrients in a container can be depleted faster. When re-purposing plastic containers, please keep in mind that some of them might not hold up to the sun’s UV rays and might leach toxic chemicals into the soil and plant.

Ready to incorporate these exciting ideas into your garden? Need help installing a drip irrigation system for all your container edibles? Our team at Blessing Landscapes can help you do that! Give us a call at 503-284-3557 or contact us. We look forward to chatting with you over lunch with a healthy meal of your fresh garden produce!