How to Grow Vegetables in Plastic Bags


If you dream of juicy red tomatoes and fresh crisp beans straight from the garden, but simply don't have the room or the right soil for gardening--container gardening is for you. Not only can you grow an abundance of fresh vegetables in a small space, these gardens require relatively little care. Although nearly any container will do---as long as it has good drainage and rich soil---rounding up all those containers and filling them with soil can be a pain. Fortunately, you can grow vegetables in a plastic bag of potting soil.

Step 1

Select an area in full sun for 6 to 8 hours a day for your mini-garden. Choose an elevated area where water can drain freely from the bottom of the bag.

Step 2

Place a large bag of potting soil on the ground. Punch holes in the top of the bag to create drainage holes. Use a dowel or pencil to puncture holes 6 inches apart in all directions.

Step 3

Turn the bag over so the drainage holes rest against the ground.

Step 4

Cut a rectangle out of the exposed side of the bag, leaving a 2-inch border. Remove the plastic.

Step 5

Plant salad greens, radishes or beets in the potting soil, following the recommended seed depth. Space seeds to the row spacing in all directions.

Step 6

Leave plastic in place for large vegetables like potatoes or tomatoes. Cut an "X" large enough to accommodate the root ball of your seedlings in the plastic to create a planting hole.

Step 7

Insert the root ball of your seedlings into the potting soil and firm the soil around the roots. Plant one or two tomato plants per bag. Cut a seed potato into sections so that each section has at least one eye; plant in the potting soil.

Step 8

Water to keep soil moist. Soil in containers dries quickly. Check soil daily until you determine the watering needs of your plants.

Step 9

Apply water-soluble fertilizer every 10 to 14 days until harvest.

Things You'll Need

  • Large bag of potting soil
  • Dowel or pencil
  • Vegetable seeds or seedlings
  • Water
  • Water-soluble fertilizer


  • Ed Hume Seeds: Potatoes Are Easy to Grow Vegetables
  • Rodale: How to Grow Vegetables Anywhere
Keywords: garden in bags, plastic bag gardens, plastic container garden

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.