When space is at a premium and you have nowhere else to grow there is only one solution, up! You don’t need a lot of gardening space or a huge budget to create more vegetables, you can easily produce more fresh vegetables by gardening vertically.
Here is my list of vertical garden vegetables that grow well in vertical gardens along with my tips on how best to vertically grow each plant to get the most from your crop.
Climbing Vine Vegetables
Climbing plants offer a logical and easy way to start gardening vertically. Some grab and some twist their way up or get supported along vertical trellises.
Any plant that can grow horizontally can also grow vertically but anything bigger than a volleyball would be better off support on the ground unless you want to support each melon with a net.
Some simple bamboo canes and some string will do the trick for most of these vegetables. You can train the vines to spread where you want them to go as they grow.
Pole Beans and Climbing Peas
Make sure you get the climbing variety, pole beans can produce much more than the bush varieties. As long as it has something to climb it will thrive, this is one of the most prolific vertical gardening vegetables.
The best way to support climbing beans is to give it a few simple poles and or bamboo sticks to climb. The more the merrier, string more sticks together at the top to make a bamboo green bean teepee. These plants will twist up almost anything.
Probably one of the most common vertically grown vegetables around. Cucumber plants have strong and lightweight vines that do very well climbing up anything their little vines can manage to wrap onto.
If you’ve ever seen a zucchini plant you might think it would be difficult to make such a fragile plant grow vertically but it’s as simple as a stake and some string. Place a strong stake next to your new zucchini plant and tie them together as the zucchini grows.
4. Spaghetti Squash
When you cook spaghetti squash you will see why it gets its name. This variety of squash stays relatively small enough for vertical gardening as long as you have a strong trellis. Almost all squash plants have large leaves and will take up a lot of space, I’ve found the best way to grow a bunch of squash vertically is to plant them in a large planter or raised garden bed on both sides with chicken wire in between, supported by two 6-8 foot posts.
5. Delicata Squash
This beautiful variety of squash only gets to be six or seven inches in length. The color of its inside flesh is similar in color to a sweet potato, its skin is a pale yellow with green stripes.
Acorn squash have dark green skin and typically end up weighing between 1-2 pounds. It has a sweet and nutty flavor and an orange-yellow flesh.
Compact pumpkins can be fun and you can even eat them, there is a large variety of small pumpkin squash available to grow.
Trailing plants produce predominantly horizontal growth with little or no strong upright branches. Vegetable plants with trailing characteristics will grow great in hanging baskets, in mounted or stacked containers, or in a tower/wall of rain gutter planters, or in hang polypropylene planter bag with holes for the plants to grow out of.
Vertical planting for this vegetable is so common that you have probably seen numerous kinds of trellises and supports in other gardens, or even at your local garden center. Tomatoes can be caged or you could use a stake or trellis to support them as they grow. Cherry tomatoes, as well as others, can also grow down from a hanging basket, even upside down.
Mmm… Sweet or hot, peppers are so delicious! There are so many different kinds of peppers but pepper plants basically all grow the same way. Get creative, peppers grow well in steps of vertical containers, or as part of a hydroponic system, and typically do not drape down like tomato plants.
Leafy vegetable plants are considerably different than the climbing and trailing vegetable plants. They lack the ability to keep growing vertically but, they require less sun and have a small root system. Which makes them perfect for planting into little soil plugs as part of a vertical hydroponic, aquaponic, or aeroponic system.
You can grow all types of leafy greens like, lettuce, spinach, arugula, kale and more.
It’s the right combination of vertical growing crops, supports and using the correct containers that will help you get the most from a small space. I hope this has helped!
There are so many ideas out there for gardening in a small place, if you’ve got one don’t keep it to yourself, share it by leaving a comment below.