A vertical garden for a hopeless gardener


I kill plants. Over-watering, under-watering, straight up forgotten. I have excelled in every method possible of converting a lush green thing into a brown, dried up, twiggy shell of its former self. I love plants, though, and this is a thing I want to change about myself, so I’m going to give it another go on a small and useful scale.

There’s a sliver of wall in my kitchen where another tenant, iterations ago, put up a piece of pegboard. It had been painted over so many times that the holes were mostly sealed, so I gave it another coat myself and started thinking about how I could conceal it or make use of it.

When I was in Ikea, recently, one of the inspiration rooms had a vertical garden display, though it was filled with fake plants. I thought that a small version would be perfect for the wall space. It gets great light, and I could grow herbs to cook with.

When I was at Home Depot next, I picked up three plastic pots, potting soil, and three plants– globe basil, flat parsley and oregano. The pots were ugly, a muddy terra cotta color, but they were the right size and the right price, less than $2 apiece, for my budget.


When I got them home, I spray painted them with Rustoleum’s Painter’s Touch in Moss Green. It was between that and a yellow, but I had a full can of the green and maybe half of the yellow, so that decided that. After the two light coats were dry, I applied a final satin clear topcoat. I’d picked the topcoat up for a previous project, but had never used it, but I will from now on. The dried finish felt much more set, not at all like the way spray-painted plastic can sometimes feel tacky or sticky.

I left the pots to cure and had intended to finish the project the next day, but late that night, after I came home from a friend’s birthday cocktail party, I felt “inspired” to finish up. I had debated several ways of hanging the pots on the wall, some kind of hook system, perhaps, so I could take them down, but decided instead to go the simplest route and screwed them directly into the wall, made possible by that piece of pegboard.

I’m wholly pleased with this project! I love the visual interest it adds to that otherwise unused space. It’s also a great system for indoor gardening. If water drips out of the bottom of the pot, it falls into the pot below, so one small saucer on the counter underneath keeps things clean and dry. I want to acquire more plants, but I guess I’ll wait to see how these ones fare.




One comment

  1. Fleur De Seoul · · Reply

    The top one would be great for potted varieties of cherry tomatoes

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