The Best Containers for Edibles
Ellen C. Wells
Our industry gained a good number of gardeners last year—upwards of 20 million! It’s a fair bet that most of them are now experimenting with growing their own food. Chances are their edible plants will spend some portion of their lives in a pot, whether just as seedlings or living through to harvest. What follows is our round up of a few different types and brands of containers fitting a range of uses.
Here’s a pro tip for the coming sales season: Pot up these containers with veggies and grow them on as samples in your veggie gardening displays. Or, better yet, plant them with the culinary must-haves (tomatoes, basil, lettuce, etc.) and have them ready for quick sale. Think how many more you could sell!
Al’s Flower Pouch
Al’s Flower Pouch is a consumer favorite for growing edibles such as herbs, leafy greens, tomatoes and strawberries. The hanging pouch lifts plants up off the ground for easier access and maintenance. Bonus? The pouches hold the veggies up and away from crawling critters. Invented by A.M.A. Horticulture’s founder Allen Monsma, Al’s Flower Pouch is seeing an increase in use as a solution to small-space gardening.
Give your edibles some elegance with Proven Winners’ AquaPots. Patio- and balcony-based food gardens get a luxury upgrade with this line of gorgeous glazed ceramic self-watering containers. Not only are they attractive, but they also incorporate a patent-pending self-watering system directly into the container. That thirsty tomato will have plenty of water for a hot August afternoon.
The Earth Box from Novelty Manufacturing has made container gardening easy and accessible for a wide range of gardeners, including those with little space, skill or confidence. Its patented, maintenance-free design puts science to work to control soil conditions and double the yield of a conventional garden, all while using less fertilizer and water.
The EarthBox Original Garden Kit is a four-piece system (container, aeration screen, water fill tube and two mulch covers) on casters measuring 29 in. long, 13.5 in. wide and 11in. deep with a soil capacity of 2 cu. ft. The EarthBox Jr. uses the exact same technology but in a smaller unit (23 in. long, 9.5 in. wide, 7.25 in. deep) and without casters. The Earth Box Root & Veg kit is designed for longer roots crops such as carrots or parsnips or for larger individual plants such one tomato. It measures at its top 17.75 in. square and 15.75 in. deep. All models come with dolomite and either standard or organic fertilizer.
EcoGrow and FiberGrow
For customers looking to have less plastic in their lives, the EcoGrow and FiberGrow pots from The HC Companies fill the bill. Both lines are made from fiber and allow the root zone to breathe, providing an optimal environment for root growth. Both are also durable enough for production and retail environments. The EcoGrow pots will biodegrade quickly when planted or turned into the soil, while the FiberGrow line is easily recycled through municipal programs. EcoGrow’s organic version is also certified for organic farming in the U.S. and Canada. Available in numerous styles and sizes.
The breathable fabric Smart Pot growing bags offer improved drainage and aeration that reduces root circling and leads to better and healthier plant growth. Smart Pots also allow for easy growing of potatoes, carrots and other deep soil-needing veggies when an in-ground garden isn’t an option. New to the Smart Pot product line are the Vivid Colors Assortment, Urban Raised Bed Garden and the Pond, Houseplants and Herb and Microgreens Clip Strips. GP
Pictured: Al’s Flower Pouch from A.M.A Horticulture.
Pictured: AquaPots 21-in. Volcanic in Falling Brown from Proven Winners.
Pictured: The EarthBox Original Garden Kit from Novelty Manufacturing. The EarthBox Jr. Kit from Novelty Manufacturing. The EarthBox Root & Veg Kit from Novelty Manufacturing.
Pictured: EcoGrow pot from The HC Companies. FiberGrow Pak Strip from The HC Companies.
Pictured: Smart Pot’s Urban Raised Bed Garden. Smart Pot’s Herb & Microgreens Clip Strip. Smart Pot’s Vivid Garden Assortment.