How To Plant A Large Galvanized Trough Planter

by Texas Homesteader ~ 

Planting a large galvanized water trough for beautiful edible landscaping around your home looks great! Plus it’s easy and can be done inexpensively too. But how do you plant such a large trough as a raised bed? I’m sharing some tips.

Planting large galvanized water troughs for edible beauty around your home. It's easy and can be done inexpensively too. #TexasHomesteader

I love the concept of edible landscaping. Just because a plant provides something you can eat doesn’t mean it can’t be beautifully incorporated into your landscape plan.

Planting Edible But Decorative Raised Beds

Recently we had an Outdoor Living room built to extend our back porch. I set out to Landscape It On The Cheap.

Outdoor living space made from a covered porch. #TexasHomesteader

For raised beds I bought two huge galvanized trough planters. As always I strove to plant edibles for the landscaping.

We already had one old weathered trough planter at another end of our porch. I love to plant either heat-loving Malabar Spinach or even Plant Potatoes in that trough each year.

Planting potatoes in galvanized water trough for easier harvest. Planting large galvanized water troughs for edible beauty around your home. It's easy and can be done inexpensively too. #TexasHomesteader

We also placed a rustic and rusted galvanized tub on the other side of the porch.

This one held a miniature blueberry bush. I love the way this planting turned out!

A miniature blueberry bush planted in an old galvanized tub. #TexasHomesteader

We even had another large water trough placed to catch rainwater. This provides all the water for plants and trees in our backyard.

Rainwater catchment as simple as routing downspout gutter into galvanized trough. #TexasHomesteader

It’s just one of the 3 Rainwater Catchment tricks we use.

But now I want to plant the other two troughs to beautifully landscape our outdoor living area. But how do you fill such deep troughs?

How To Plant A Large Water Trough

We bought two large 4-ft wide troughs to plant. Oh how I love a blank canvas!

Hopkins Homestead Store galvanized steel raised beds coupon code. #TexasHomesteader

We sat them up on retaining-wall stones to both level the footing as well as to give them support.

Then we removed the plugs from each of the troughs so they would have a way to drain if they received too much water.

Retaining wall stones and sand footings for support in planting large galvanized water troughs for edible beauty around your home. It's easy and can be done inexpensively too. #TexasHomesteader

Water Drainage Tip For A Large Planter

But these huge troughs will require lots of soil (with LOTS of weight!).

I know when I plant something in a large pot I first put something loose like rocks to help with drainage. But what can I use for these huge galvanized troughs? Hummmm…

I know! Last year we asked a bakery if they had any food-safe frosting buckets with lids that we could have. They sent us out the door with about 50!

We washed them and used them to store honey and pantry supplies but there were

Just. So. Many!

I asked RancherMan to fetch about 10-12 buckets and lids. The lids were snapped on and I arranged the buckets upside down snugly at the bottom of my troughs. 

Repurposing plastic buckets in the bottom of large water troughs. Planting large galvanized water troughs for edible beauty around your home. It's easy and can be done inexpensively too. #TexasHomesteader

I’ve also used EcoBricks at the bottom of troughs for a 2-fer-1 win drainage option.

EcoBricks are simply a large plastic bottle (such as a juice bottle, etc) that is tightly packed with non-recyclable trash.

I packed mine with clean/dry plastic caps from milk jugs, small plastic wrappings from various purchases, cracker sleeves, candy wrappers, thermal-paper receipts, etc.

EcoBricks are plastic bottles packed with clean non-recyclable plastic. #TexasHomesteader

Then I laid landscape cloth over the buckets.

This made a huge difference in the overall weight of the filled troughs as well as the purchased soil requirement.

Where To Get Bulk Soil For Raised Beds

We asked around and found a dirt hauling company close to us.  So we contacted him and found we could buy sandy fill dirt by the truck-bed load for CHEAP! 

Buying soil from a dirt-hauler and filled large plastic buckets with fill dirt for cheap. #TexasHomesteader

Buying soil in bulk is significantly cheaper, PLUS there are no disposable plastic bags to deal with.

And this much soil would have required many plastic bags. I shun plastic like a ninja!

Planting Raised Bed Edible Plants Can Be Pretty

But now that the troughs are set up, what shall I plant?

I decided to dig up a small piece of asparagus from the garden and transplant it here. I love the light ferny texture of the leaves. Plus it’s a veggie that gives every year without replanting.

Don’t you love the Lazy Gardener plants? ME TOO! Plant once and eat for years. That’s my kinda gardening! 

A list of easy plant & forget vegetable garden plants that feed you every year! #TexasHomesteader

Of course I added carrots & spinach for the border as I typically do. Pretty plants and a hearty harvest too.

A small lavender plant will be added for some nice blossom color here.

Planting large galvanized water troughs for edible beauty around your home. It's easy and can be done inexpensively too. #TexasHomesteader

Several years ago I added Everbearing Strawberries to the mix. They’ve grown great! Each spring I get a flush of those ripe juicy berries. They give me a second smaller harvest late in the year.

I can typically trick birds away from my fresh strawberries by using this handy trick – I scatter Strawberry Painted Rocks among the plants before any berries turn red.

Paint small rocks to look like strawberries and place them in your strawberry patch to deter the birds. #TexasHomesteader

This trick works every year to keep the many birds that frequent our yard away from my precious strawberries. It’s rare now that I lose one of my strawberries to the birds.

One of the troughs has a strip of garlic planted along the back side. This garlic originally came from my grandmother’s house back in the 1990’s. Sentimental food!

I also like to plant a jalapeno plant in this trough so RancherMan can toss fresh peppers on the grill when he’s grilling supper for us.

Small herb plants are arranged at the base of these troughs as well. I transplanted Thyme and Oregano for this area.

Not only was it free because I transplanted it from other areas, but it looks beautiful, the bees love it and fresh herbs are right outside my back door.

Edible landscape, oregano. Planting large galvanized water troughs for edible beauty around your home. It's easy and can be done inexpensively too. #TexasHomesteader

I love our new peaceful outdoor living space. It’s beautiful and the bees love it too. And beautifully-planting water troughs provides us food as well, what’s not to love?


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2 thoughts on “How To Plant A Large Galvanized Trough Planter

  1. Laurinda

    The buckets idea is GENIUS!


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