How to Grow Organic Vegetables in a Bucket


Organic gardening eliminates the health risks associated with pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers. A 2008 review of 97 published studies on the nutritional value of organically grown vegetables, conducted by The Organic Center, revealed that organic foods are--on average--more nutritious than foods raised by nonorganic methods. Although consuming organic foods is a step toward improving health, maintaining a healthy lifestyle with exercise and weight control is also important. Growing organic vegetables not only brings peace of mind, it provides daily exercise and relieves stress, contributing to your well-being.

Step 1

Select plants in the appropriate size for the container or bucket you wish to use as a planter. Choose patio tomatoes, peppers or other miniature or dwarf vegetables for containers. Salad greens, radish, beets and carrots are suitable for a small bucket.

Step 2

Provide drainage holes in the bottom of the bucket. Drill 4 to 6 holes evenly spaced around the outside of the bucket, approximately 1/2 inch from the bottom.

Step 3

Mix equal parts garden loam or commercial potting soil, peat moss, compost or manure, and perlite to create a lightweight soil suitable for container growing.

Step 4

Fill the pot 3/4 full with soil.

Step 5

Plant seedlings to the original planting depth and fill in around the roots with soil. Firm down to secure the plant and remove air pockets.

Step 6

Water thoroughly until water runs freely through the drainage holes. Water when soil dries. Container gardens dry quickly and may require daily watering. Watch plants for signs of wilting.

Step 7

Place in a sunny location that receives 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight a day.

Step 8

Fertilize with manure tea or fish emulsion every 10 to 14 days.

Step 9

Check for insects daily. Hand pick visible insects. Spray with a forceful spray from the hose to dislodge insects when needed.

Things You'll Need

  • Bucket
  • Soil mix (garden loam or potting soil, manure, compost, peat moss, perlite)
  • Drill (1/4- to 1/2-inch bit)
  • Manure tea
  • Fish emulsion


  • University of Florida Extension: Producing Garden Vegetables with Organic Soil Amendments
  • University of Florida Extension: Organic Vegetable Gardening
  • The Organic Center: State of Science Review: Nutritional Superiority of Organic Vegetables

Who Can Help

  • University of Missouri Extension; Organic Gardening Techniques
Keywords: grow organic vegetables, organic container garden, organic vegetable containers, organic garden bucket

About this Author

Nannette Richford is an avid gardener, teacher and nature enthusiast with 4 years experience in online writing and a lifetime of personal journals. She is published on various sites, including Associated Content. Richford holds a Bachelor of Science in secondary education from the University of Maine Orono and certifications in 7-12 English, K-8 General Elementary and Birth to age 5.