Green Village GrowBarrelsTM - Como’s Eco-tainer for Sustainable Food

GrowBarrels are an easy-to-use, portable, self-watering container garden.

If you love to eat fresh foods, GrowBarrels can provide you with fresh vegetables and flowers throughout the season. The self-watering feature is an important element of this container garden and allows it to successfully support food producing plants.  Regular garden containers can grow vegetables too, but they are prone to drying out as they need frequent watering.  When a tomato plant is subjected to wilt, it will not be productive.  Self-watering containers protect your vegetable plants from wilting by providing consistent moisture.

Whether you do not have access to green space or just want to try a unique way to garden, come learn to build a GrowBarrel for the  2011 season!

This project was funded in large part by a grant from the McKnight Foundation.
painted GrowBarrel with trellis

Welcome to the GrowBarrel Blog

  • GrowBarrels to be at U of MN Food Day on Oct 24 Be sure to stop at Coffman Union on Monday where we will be showing off our novel food growing technique at Food Day!  If you want to help staff the table, we would be happy to have volunteers anytime from 9am-6pm.  let <steph @> know of your interest. Date: Monday, October 24th Time: 9 AM- 9 PM Location: Coffman Memorial Union For Whom: This event is open to everyone. Cost: Free! Housed in Coffman Memorial Union's Great Hall, Food Day will be both a comprehensive "FOOD EXPO" showcasing University affiliated and community-led food and health programming, as well as a series of short presentations and in-depth conversations on food-related topics. Join us throughout the ...
    Posted Oct 20, 2011, 1:09 PM by Stephanie Hankerson
  • GrowBarrels to be at the Como Cookout on 9/18 The GrowBarrel folks will have a table will be at the Como Cookout this upcoming Sunday on 9/18/2011 at Van Cleve Park from 2-5pm.  We will have a complete demonstrations on how-to make a GrowBarrel, trouble-shooting any problems you might have had during the past season of wonky weather, and we will be offering one LOVELY fully planted GrowBarrel in the silent auction (see photo).  Further, Steph will be leading a little session at the Accord Community Garden (also in the park) about Native Pollinators at 3:30 pm that day as part of the fall gardening classes SECIA is hosting.SECIA, U Community Relations and Van Cleve Park are hosting the Como Cookout event ...
    Posted Sep 12, 2011, 12:48 PM by Stephanie Hankerson
  • Rain! Not necessarily what the GrowBarreler wanted As the 2011 season has infolded we have seen some unprecedented rain events in SE Como.  The precipitation chart below only tells part of the story  and does not hint of our flooded streets, blown manhole covers and eroded RR track slopes.  What does that mean for GrowBarrelers?  Since GrowBarrels carry their own water supply, some of our built containers are not happy about 1", 2" or more rains.  Every GrowBarrel created varies a little due to both the placement height of the drain hole and the volume of the interior recyclable containers that were used in creation.  We  have noticed some that GrowBarrels that appear to have too low soil:water ratio for the current season and indicated by ...
    Posted Aug 18, 2011, 2:28 PM by Stephanie Hankerson
  • Wanted for Decimating Basil: Japanese Beetles  The most wonderful thing about GrowBarrels, for me, is that I can leave them for a week without worrying that I'm going to come back to wilted, or what I like to call the "I've been in the Sahara desert for days, why haven't you watered me?" look.  Thus, I went on a six day trip to Kentucky last week confident I would return to happy plants - until the Japanese Beetle came into my life.  My basil no longer has leaves - it is, in fact, a skeleton. Grrr....So, now that I have vented, what can I - or anyone else - do about these little nuisances?  At my house, we pick them off the plant at least once ...
    Posted Aug 9, 2011, 1:47 PM by Unknown user
  • Now is the time to seed for fall harvesting! Our GrowBarrels can keep on performing well into November with weather luck, and if fall seeding is done now.  Late July and early August is the time to seed the following:LettucePeasbroccoliMost of the GrowBarrel participants got these seeds from our workshops, but you can source your own too. We got our plants and seeds from Egg|Plant Urban Farm Store in St. Paul. A bit later in the season, seeding of spinach, radish and other herbs can be done at the end of August.  Remember that handy grid you got at the workshop that has a schedule for transplanting, seeding and harvesting? Follow this link to see that page online. This is another good reference from ...
    Posted Jul 28, 2011, 3:10 PM by Stephanie Hankerson
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Green Village GrowBarrelTM Workshop Pictures

May 28, 2011