How to Make Earth Boxes


An earth box is a container that helps to cut down on the amount of care that you give plants by storing everything that a plant needs inside the container. Time-release fertilizer for the plant is mixed with the soil, and water for the plant is held in a separate reservoir beneath the soil chamber. Plants grown in an earth box are vigorous and healthy. At the same time, growing plants in an earth box helps to cut down on weeds.

Step 1

Drill holes throughout the 6 pieces of PVC pipe. Make each hole approximately 3 inches apart.

Step 2

Trim the edges of the egg crate light panel so that it will fit into the storage box when stacked onto the ends of the PVC pipe.

Step 3

Stack the tubes on their ends on top of the egg crate light panel. Attach them to the panel by threading the zip ties through the drill holes and the grid of the panel.

Step 4

Turn the panel over, and place it into the box.

Step 5

Remove some of the interior grid squares from the panels over three of the tubes on one side. Leave some squares in place so that the tubes will continue to hold the panel up.

Step 6

Cut the mesh window screen to fit over the egg crate grid. Place the screen over the grid. This will keep the soil in the soil chamber.

Step 7

Snip away the screen over one of the tubes. Cut one end of the PVC pipe at an angle. Insert the angled end into the mesh screen and the tube below. Drill a ½ inch hole into the side of the container 1 inch below the level of the screen.

Step 8

Fill the soil chamber with good quality potting soil. Sprinkle granulated fertilizer over the top of the soil. Cover with landscaping fabric. Cut away a hole in the fabric for the plants and insert the plant into the dirt in the hole.

Things You'll Need

  • Opaque 18-gallon storage box
  • 6 pieces of 6-inch-long PVC pipe that is 4 Inches in diameter
  • 1 panel of egg crate light grid cut 18 inches by 15 feet
  • 18-inch piece of ¾ inch diameter PVC pipe
  • Jig saw
  • Window screen mesh
  • Plastic zip ties
  • Drill
  • ½ inch drill bit
  • Heavy duty scissors
  • Potting soil
  • Granulated fertilizer
  • Landscaping fabric


  • DIY Earthboxes
  • Build Your Own Self-Watering Container Garden
  • Making a self watering container or Earthbox

Who Can Help

  • Homemade Self Contained Gardening System
Keywords: earth box, container garden, self contained gardening

About this Author

After 10 years experience in writing, Tracy S. Morris has countless articles and two novels to her credit. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets" and "CatFancy," as well as the "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World," and several websites.