How-To: Make a hanging upside-down garden

Story by Danielle Ryan

Many stores now offer hanging upside-down planters as an alternative to traditional gardens. For example, at Menards, 3619 South Hastings Way, you can find planters designed to hang upside-down, like the Tomato Planter ™ or the Strawberry Planter™ for $8.88 each. However, with materials found at any home improvement store, these planters are quite easy and inexpensive to make at home.


– Five-gallon Menards pail, $2.78
(found in Aisle 05 at Menards)

– Retractable utility knife, $2.49
(found in the Hand Tools section, aisle 153 at Menards)

– Five-inch garden mum, $1.50
(see note at bottom)

– Potting soil

TOTAL TIME TO MAKE: 10 minutes

1. Cut a two-inch hole in the bottom of the pail with the utility knife.

2. If you are using seedlings, cut small slits in a coffee filter and place it in the bottom of the pail. This will help prevent the young plants and excess dirt from falling through the hole. In our example, however, we use a five-inch plant and do not need this extra precaution.

3. Remove the plant from its plastic
container and turn it upside-down.

4. Carefully push the plant through the hole in the bottom of the pail.

If needed, trim down the plant with the utility knife so it can fit through the hole.

5. Fill the pail with several inches of potting soil.

6. Water your new plant thoroughly.

7. Hang the pail in a location that will receive the appropriate amount of sunlight, according to your plant’s needs.

For even more space conservation, use the open space on top of the bucket to grow herbs or small flowers the normal, right-side-up method.