Finding the Best Grow Tower for Vertical Gardening

vertical garden

It's time for many of us to literally grow up because we're discussing something called a grow tower. This vertical grow system allows all varieties of plants to grow straight up. They are catching on fast because they take up far less space, conserve water, and can be easy to maintain. Grow towers make gardening easy. Even people with "brown thumbs" can get growing fast without all the hassles of digging and maintaining a traditional garden. Even better, people with mobility issues can harvest crops while standing up with some of the taller vertical grow systems.

Actually, many people are creating their own handmade grow towers, but there are many great models now available for purchase online too. We will review some of the best grow towers widely available on the market. Your next gardening project may be just a few clicks away and delivered to your door shortly.

Keep in mind that some people refer to the models that use traditional potting soil as "tower gardens" and those that use a hydroponic growing method as "grow towers." However, as you'll see, the models below are often a hybrid of the two. There is a lot of flexibility to customize and to pick a garden growing system that works just right for you.

Comparison Table

Things to Consider When Picking a Grow Tower

Grow Tower
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Here, we've compiled some of the basic concerns you'll no doubt want to think about before making a purchase.

Cost

Space available

Plant types

Maximum number of plants

Location

High humidity in the home

Maintenance

Size and weight

Growing Mediums

Let's dig into the details of the two main substrates, one of which you already know for sure.

digging some soil
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Soil

Hydroponic systems

Hydroponic systems

Aeroponic systems

Lighting

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If your grow tower is outdoors, you can take full advantage of the sun's rays. You can rotate many of the systems to expose plants in the shadows to the sun whenever you like. It's a great option when your tower sits against a wall or corner. It also keeps the plant growth uniform as the leaves reach out for the precious sunlight in all directions rather than to one side.

Very briefly, if you grow your plant indoors, then you'll rely on grow lights unless you have the perfect spot near a window or sunroom. There are now many LED lighting systems for plants, but the typical fluorescent lights made for growing plants are an old stand-by. Since LED lights are becoming more and more affordable and are so energy efficient, they are often worth a higher initial investment. Whatever lighting system you choose, consider the additional cost when you select your grow tower.

Special Features

Let's narrow down some of the reasons why one design might appeal to your specific gardening goals more than another.

Space for roots

Composting ability

Design

Extras

How We Reviewed the Best Grow Towers

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We reviewed the following models by looking at their availability online, favorable customer reviews, flexibility, ease of use, attractive design, and cost. There are many countless models on the market as grow towers are also growing in popularity. We hope this list will make it easier for you to start your garden and see what's available. It will give gardening enthusiasts and novices a quick reference and hopefully encourage you to jump, or should we say, dig in.

Our Top Picks of the Best Grow Towers

Now the moment we've been waiting for: Let's check out grow towers just a click away for purchase. Will you see one you just can't live without?

5 Tier Stackable Strawberry, Herb, Flower, and Vegetable Planter -...
  • L:12" W:12" H:28"; 25 Quart Soil Volume
  • Grow Food Efficiently At Home; Eliminate Weeds & Pests, 20 Plants 1 Square Foot
  • Space up to 85% Water & Space - Easy --> Plant. Stack. Water Top.

This tower could grow 40 plants in just four square feet. The large and robust tower allows for deep root systems. It's big and heavy, but it also spins like a carousel for easy access to all plants. Some of the models come with built-in wheels too, making it very easy to move around. It's so large, it's much better for use with potting soil mixtures. You'll want to pick one that is nice and fluffy with additives like perlite, coconut coir, or peat moss. You get the idea: Don't go for something heavy and bulky.

One of the very best features of this model is the "vermicomposting" nutrient delivery system in the middle tube. This system allows the use of compost with red wiggler worms or earthworms which produce beneficial worm castings for the plants. The thought of worms might not be appealing to you, but it's definitely optional. There is a reservoir below the unit to conserve water use.

Top off all this grow tower greatness with an inclusive five-year manufacturer warranty. This item has an Amazon rating of 4.6 out of 5-stars.

Huge GreenStalk 5 Tier Vertical Garden Planter w/Patented Internal...
  • The GreenStalk system is proud to be designed and manufactured completely in East TN. Made with high quality, BPA-free,...
  • To water the entire system use GreenStalk's patented watering system: simply fill to the 5 tier mark on the top water...
  • Easily grows a wide variety of vegetables, herbs, strawberries and flowers including potatoes, lettuce, corn, and...

This grow tower comes in black, brown, stone, and green colors. A family-run business manufactures them entirely in East Tennessee. The company points out the plastic is BPA-free and UV-resistant with a five-year warranty.

The GreenStalk has a patented watering system: Put water in the top water reservoir to water all of the lower tiers. Like the previous model we looked at, the medium will be potting soil, and you can pick organic varieties to ensure fewer chemicals in your food.

Although it doesn't come standard, you can buy a wheeled base and rotate or relocate the grow tower easily. This is great because it weighs about 150 lbs. when fully planted and watered. The manufacturer suggests planting larger plants at the bottom and smaller ones at the top. That way, the larger plants don't shade the plants below them.

This item has an Amazon rating of 4.1 out of 5-stars.

5 Tier Stackable Strawberry, Herb, Flower, and Vegetable Planter -...
  • L:12" W:12" H:28"; 25 Quart Soil Volume
  • Grow Food Efficiently At Home; Eliminate Weeds & Pests, 20 Plants 1 Square Foot
  • Space up to 85% Water & Space - Easy --> Plant. Stack. Water Top.

This versatile system varies in cost for a single unit. You can choose black, stone, or terracotta colors, but keep in mind, the plant leaves may cover much of the design eventually. Change up the design by stacking the versatile pots up to 10 pots high.

You can use this model as a hydroponic system. Instead of potting soil, the manufacturer recommends using a mixture of 75 percent coco peat and 25 percent perlite. If you don't want a hydroponic system, you can use regular soil, but they don't recommend this. Some models can accommodate 20 smaller plants in the space of 18.5 inches by 18.5 inches.

As a hydroponic system, you'll need some extras, like the seven-day digital timer for automatic watering available on some models. Another option you'll want is the 250 GPH submersible pump that circulates the water and nutrient solution from a 16-gallon tank. You purchase may come with a nutrient solution to start you off, and grow medium is sometimes available if you register your product with the company website.

This item has an Amazon rating of 4.1 out of 5-stars.

Meiwo New Upgraded Deeper and Bigger 7 Pocket Hanging Vertical Garden...
  • Material: Felt Cloth, 7-Pocket Wall Hanging Planter Balcony Garden Vertical Flower Vege Herbs Grow Bag.
  • Features: rugged, self-absorbing, corrosion-resistant, breathable,Wall-mounted, save space for planting.
  • Application Scene: Balcony Garden / Home Decor / Supermarket Wall / Cafe Decor / Garden Nursery.

This vertical growing system ranges from cheap to average price tag. Obviously, the best parts are the extremely inexpensive price, but it's also quite versatile too. It's simple to set up and use, mounting to a wall or fence from a rod or hooks.

The felt cloth, 7-Pocket Wall Hanging Planter measures 40 by 11.8 inches but comes in many different sizes. Since it consists of water-absorbent cloth, it's not the best choice for full sun since seedlings can dry out relatively fast.

On the other hand, it's easy to transplant the plants to other spots or containers. You can use it indoors or outdoors, but since moisture goes through the fabric, it can damage walls or floors if you don't use plastic liners. You can do this easily with trash bags. You'll most likely want to do this if you use the pocket hanging garden indoors.

Unless you set up your own drip system, you'll need to water each pocket individually, so there may be more maintenance as a trade-off for that cheap price.

This item has an Amazon rating of 3.7 out of 5-stars.

Foody Tower - Stacking Vertical Garden - Soil in Growing Pods &...
  • YOUR INTRODUCTION TO VERTICAL GARDENING: Easy to set up, plant and maintain.
  • LIMITED SPACE? NO PROBLEM: Grows 40 plants in just 2 sq ft. in your home, on your deck or patio.
  • GROWS IN ANY CLIMATE:. Deep soil protects roots. Easy to move indoors, or into the sun or shade.

These hybrid models vary in cost. This is an aesthetically pleasing "introduction to vertical gardening" that stands up to five feet tall. This could be great for those who don't enjoy lots of bending and stretching. Just harvest plants right in front of your eyes. The tower rotates for easy access to sunlight exposure for the plants as well.

The manufacturer says it's easy to move and set-up and is perfect for indoor or outdoor use. The stacking pots allow full, deep root systems. The company suggests the system is ideal for all climates due to this feature. That's because plants with full root structures aren't as likely to dry out fast in hot climates.

With this model, you could grow up to 40 plants in two square feet of space. It's a hybrid because while it uses potting soil, it also has a reservoir at the base that uses hydroponic liquid nutrients you'll need to purchase separately. You don't have to use the hydroponic component, but it also might be fun to try if you want.

This item has an Amazon rating of 4.0 out of 5-stars.

SELF Watering Indoor Outdoor Vertical Wall Hangers with Pots Included...
  • ONE OF A KIND AUTOMATIC DRIPPING SYSTEM- Self watering planters provide enough water for days, meaning you don't have to...
  • INCREDIBLE 3 POCKET WALL MOUNTED PLANT SYSTEM- Each hanging wall planter has 3 pockets to give you room to grow...
  • INCLUDES 12 MODULAR WALL PLANTERS- We've included 12 pots within our wall mounted hanging planter for you to create...

These may appear to be a "grow wall" rather than a "grow tower." You could use the system inside or outdoors and it comes in grey, terracotta, and green. It's straightforward to secure the lightweight pots to the wall using regular screws. On the other hand, the pockets can also clip to the bottom of one another.

The planters with three pockets fit together, covering as much wall space as you desire. The automatic dripping system allows water to drip down from the top row of planters to the lower ones, and a nine-foot hose delivers the water to the top row of containers. The manufacturer states that the hose fits American standard tap fixtures. The system has a three-year guarantee.

If used indoors, you'll definitely want to ensure protect surfaces from moisture, drips, and splashes. This item has an Amazon rating of 4.3 out of 5 stars.

Vertical Metal Plant Stand 13 Tiers Display Plants Indoor or Outdoors...
  • Buyer receives the plant stand , Plant pots are not included
  • This plant stand can be used to display plants, indoors or outdoors on a balcony or as a unique room divider
  • A plant stand makes it possible to decorate with plants everywhere at home

These handmade grow towers vary in cost. They are charmingly handmade and the company states each tower is made from "PVC and love." Each tube has eight vertically placed plant sites on a thin tube that mounts to just about any vertical surface.

One great feature is that these will hang on chain link fence without the need for tools. They are easy to use with potting soil, but the seller can customize them for hydroponic use if you ask. The FenceFarm requires watering every other day unless you create your own drip irrigation system above it.

This item has an Etsy rating of 5.0 out of 5-stars with 7 reviews.

The Best Grow Tower

Although it has a higher initial investment, the Garden Tower 2 really does check off a lot of boxes for a perfect grow tower. It has great features such as the composting tube in the center tower, wheels for easy mobility, and a large size that can produce a ton of vegetables or other plants.

All of the other models are great for those who want to start a garden without investing as much as the Garden Tower 2. The pocket hanging vertical gardens offer an unbeatable price, which will no doubt be appealing to many just starting out. There are many competitors and the pocket gardens come in many colors and sizes. Wherever you decide to place it, keep in mind that the fabric is going to be wet at times.

A special mention goes out to the handmade FenceFarm because they obviously make them with love and you can easily attach them to any chain-link fence in minutes. We hope this gives you a great start to finding the perfect grow tower for you. May you see many new green possibilities springing up in unexpected places around you.

Featured Image via Unsplash

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