by Amber

The Water Bottle Garden

The more people play around with passive hydroponics, the more cool ideas and nifty products become available. For some, the idea of arranging dissected Coke bottles in the windowsill falls short of their sense of home… venturing into what should be reserved for the garage or a shed out back. The folks at Petomato have changed all that with their little passive hydroponics gadget for used drinking water bottles which is really very cool.

This gives you the perfect low investment start-up garden for growing fresh food and herbs indoors, no matter where you live. Petomato has the water bottle garden science perfected for having fresh cherry tomatoes, habanero peppers, basil, and a few other plants that are high on everyone’s list for favorite foods they would love to always have on hand.

It works with capillary action, and is quite a bit smaller than a bread box. Heck it’s more compact than a loaf of bread. Even better is you don’t need really deep windowsills to accommodate their version of the sunny window garden system. Mid-sized drinking water bottles and 1-liter Coke bottles are pretty narrow compared to a 2 liter-soft drink bottle. You don’t even need to chop up the disposable container, just insert the Petomato cap gizmo, follow their directions and you’ll have no problem coaxing life out of your inexpensive little non-circulating hydroponic unit. No batteries or electricity needed.

Not your average product introduction video…



Their kit comes with everything you need to get started. Cap end insert planter, rooting sand, seeds and plant nutrients. The Petomato gardener will have to fashion their own sunshade for the bottles though. This is important, because without it, roots that need total sun protection won’t be very happy about all that light. Additionally, algae is far to exuberant about sunshine and still water. But instead of being stuck with some company’s idea of what colors you can pick from for shading those dark loving roots, you can make your bottle covers exactly the color, pattern and texture that you want to. Customizing the garden to fit your taste and decorating scheme.

The Petomato sunshade wrapper stops algae from growing inside your hydroponic reservoir/water bottle.Absolutely new to growing food plants? Petomato has thought of everything and gives you easy to follow directions for getting your seeds started and finishing off your crop to harvest. They’ve got all kinds of tips of what the newbie gardener should, and should not do ready and waiting.

Naturally, your success with the Petomato hydroponic system will be totally dependent on how much sunlight is available, the environment the gardener provides and their commitment to taking care of the regular needs of the plants they’ve chosen to grow. Their website says not to start seeds in the summer or in the winter. But you can – IF you have air conditioning and can maintain cooler than seasonal temperatures in summer, and IF you use a decent grow light to make up for the lack of sun power to get things growing well in the winter.

Get in the grow…

This thing is all the rage in Japan. A great gift for a lot of people you know, from ages 6 to 86. Stop giving water bottles to the garbage man. Stop wasting gas hauling 1-liter pop bottle back to the store. Turn them into micro-hydroponic garden units with the only $14.99 gadget on the market. They could be the means to starting an indoor farm for the urban home.

No doubt you can grow a greater variety of plants this way than they have in their kits. Learn more about the Petomato gizmo that will turn any empty water bottle into a growing machine: www.buypetomato.com.

Sunwrapper and bottle images ourtesy of Petomato.

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The garden played a starring role from spring through fall in the house Amber was raised in. She has decades of experience growing plants from seeds and cuttings in the plot and pots.