How to Make an Upside Down Tomato Grower

Overview

In the garden, tomatoes are considered to be the king of all vegetable plants. Most people who only have a small garden will still make room for tomatoes. Tomatoes may be planted in hay bales, in the ground or in containers. Dwarf varieties may even be grown in hanging baskets suspended from a porch. One method of growing tomatoes involves suspending them upside down from sturdy hanging planters. As the vines grow, they bend upward in a J shape to grow toward the light. This creates a growing curiosity in your garden.

Step 1

Dig a hole for the T-Leg clothesline pole in a location well away from buildings that can shade the tomato plants. Your plants should receive at least six hours of sunlight daily. The hole should be 2 feet deep.

Step 2

Fill the hole with 6 inches of gravel. Set the end of the clothesline pole into the hole so that it is at a 90-degree angle to the soil line.

Step 3

Mix concrete in the mixing bucket with water until the concrete is as thick as cake batter. Pour the concrete into the hole around the clothesline post up to the soil line. Tamp the concrete with the tamping tool to release any air pockets. Allow the concrete to dry for 48 hours.

Step 4

Drill a hole in the center bottom of a 5 gallon bucket with the spade bit. Run the handle of a bucket through the handle of a broom. Place the broom on the backs of two chairs so the bucket is suspended between them.

Step 5

Cut an X in the center of a coffee filter. Carefully place the root ball of a tomato plant through the coffee filter and pull the filter up to the leaves of the tomato plant. Push the leaves through the hole in the bucket, being careful not to break the leaves or stem.

Step 6

Hold the root ball supported in one hand and carefully fill the bucket with potting soil up to the brim. Water the bucket from the top with a garden hose until the soil is saturated. Place the lid onto the top of the bucket.

Step 7

Repeat Steps 4, 5 and 6 for the second bucket.

Step 8

Hang each bucket by its handle from one of the arms of the clothesline pole.

Things You'll Need

  • Steel T leg clothesline pole
  • Post hole diggers
  • Pea gravel
  • Concrete
  • Tamping tool
  • Mixing bucket
  • Garden hose
  • 2 plastic buckets with lids, 5 gallon
  • 2 coffee filters
  • Drill
  • Spade bit
  • Broom
  • 2 chairs
  • Potting soil
  • Tomato plants

References

  • "The New Complete Do-It-Yourself Manual;" Reader's Digest; 1991
  • Washington State University: Try Something Different
  • Alabama Cooperative Extension Service: Growing Tomatoes in June
  • Upside Down Tomato Plant: Instructions on how to make your own upside down tomato plant

Who Can Help

  • Cheap Vegetable Gardener: Make your own upside down tomato planter
Keywords: Topsy Turvy Tomato, hanging tomato planter, garden construction

About this Author

Tracy S. Morris has been a freelance writer since 2000. She has published two novels and numerous online articles. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets," "CatFancy," "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World."