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Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Mini SFG for patio - from $10 HD box! Toplef10Mini SFG for patio - from $10 HD box! 1zd3ho10

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

Mini SFG for patio - from $10 HD box! I22gcj10Mini SFG for patio - from $10 HD box! 14dhcg10

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Mini SFG for patio - from $10 HD box!

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Marc Iverson
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Post  aerodyne 8/7/2013, 9:23 pm

Saw a 27 gal "Tough" box "HDX" container at home depot today.  On sale for $10 each!  I bought two. 

What is interesting is this:


  • The boxes are stackable, and have self aligning features that are key.

  • Unlike most storage boxes, these are thick walled and non-translucent

  • The cover flips over and serves as a slip mat/drainage basin. The box fits in the cover

  • The box is very sturdy and can be moved/lifted even when filled with wet dirt

  • The box and lid have six slots, 1 foot apart, for posts. The holes line up eaactly. One can make a grid between the slots, 12" x 18" 

  • The posts react side loads into the box and cover.  No need for pounding them into the ground!  This should enable a sturdy trellis support that moves with the box.

  • Two of these boxes will fit nicely in a 3 x 4 SFG, except the depth of 14" will allow you to plant large or deep root crops without modifiying your existing SFG.



I will use this for experiments to figure out the right depth/placement for crops, etc, before expanding/redoing my SFG.   See pic below:
https://i.servimg.com/u/f75/18/45/92/36/mini_s10.jpg
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Post  mollyhespra 8/7/2013, 10:04 pm

Hey, that's pretty cool!  Did you happen to notice what type of plastic the boxes are made of?
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Post  sanderson 8/7/2013, 11:40 pm

Those are nice. Deeper than the cement mixing trays so you can plant deep root crops. Filled to 6 inches, I'm picturing a salad bed right out the back door (or where ever the sun is for you. Hmm I just may buy one, for salads. I have Christmas lights around the back porch and I was thinking about putting a strand inside of some kind of plastic mini-greenhouse. This would work perfect for what I'm picturing. Hey, thanks for sharing. thanks 

I assume you drilled drainage holes. But, I want to share something that went wrong for me using trays under the containers. The lower roots were standing in water and the plants started failing. Someone on this Forum recommended that I remove the water trays and see if they would recover. They did!!!
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Post  aerodyne 8/7/2013, 11:52 pm

I did drill holes in each corner.  I live in a very dry climate, so I doubt I will have a problem.  The box and lid are corrugated, so there are drainage paths built in.  I can drill holeS in the lower sectionS of the box, or even in the lid in a corner if needed.  right now there is a potential for about 1/2" of water in some areas, bt not all, because of the corrugations.

Thanks for the comment

aerodyne
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Post  audrey.jeanne.roberts 8/8/2013, 12:00 am

Can you post a link to show what they look like (if Home Depot has them online)?  I'm having a hard time visualizing :-)
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Post  aerodyne 8/8/2013, 12:09 am

I posted a link to the HD spec sheet.  I assume you could not see my picture in the first post?  I will try that again...

Mini SFG for patio - from $10 HD box! Mini_s12
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Post  aerodyne 8/8/2013, 12:21 am

Seems I cannot post a link for a few more days, sorry.  Guess I'm outed as a newbie to this board!

If you google HDX 27 gal. Tote  it will be the first hit...
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Post  southern gardener 8/8/2013, 12:51 am

your pic showed up in one of the posts. Pretty slick looking! keep us updated how you do! Thanks for sharing
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Post  sanderson 8/8/2013, 2:00 am

Aerodyne, Hi, This is a private message. I live in Fresno and we are also dry and hot. I thought my plants needed lots of water or were baking in the plastic pots. (I have SFG boxes but I also needed mobile units (pots) because of the shade and sun variables.) The roots were water logged and needed a good drying. Then I followed some more advice and mulched everything, boxes and pots, with wood chips. They are actually pine chips used in playgrounds. What a complete difference removing the pans and mulching instead made. I just wanted to share my experience with another Newbie.

I am really eye-balling that box. A real possibility for me!
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Post  aerodyne 8/8/2013, 12:22 pm

I think that there is no reason why one could not drill lots of holes in the lowest portion of the grid in the box bottom, and an additional one in the cover/drip tray if need.  I filled my box last night at 7PM, 12 hrs later, the drip pan was mostly dry.  Our summers are similar, but I have dryer winters.  You may want to remove the lid/pan in the winter.

I won't get to do that, since my other half says "No way will those ugly things" stay on the patio, so into the SFG they go, sans lid/drip tray.

at 10 a piece, one could always use then for stoarge, etc...
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Post  Marc Iverson 8/8/2013, 8:32 pm

They look like they would make good worm boxes, too.
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Post  aerodyne 8/8/2013, 11:42 pm

I don't know much about worms, don't see many out here in Socal, although I'd like to.  Perhaps a good compost box.  Just shake it up and flip it a few times...you gave me an idea, tks...

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Post  aerodyne 8/9/2013, 10:42 am

Here is the reply I got from Homz:

Thank you for your interest in Home Products International.  Our Durabilt totes are made of polyethylene or polypropylene, depending on the model.  We do not manufacture with food grade resin as would be used in food storage containers as they are not made for food storage.  The 15 gallon tough tote is currently being purchased by Wal-Mart.

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Post  mollyhespra 8/9/2013, 12:56 pm

Aerodyne, are you able to look at the underside of the boxes you have and see what the plastic symbol is?  That would help narrow it down a bit better, perhaps.
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Post  aerodyne 8/9/2013, 8:39 pm

There is no symbol on the 27 gal.  I was told by the Mfg that this size is polyethylene, and the 15 gal (Wich I have nor seen yet) is made from polyproplyne.

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Post  BleuJayLady 8/9/2016, 1:38 am

Correct me if I'm wrong, but when I think "food storage containers," I think, Tupperware or Ziploc/Baggies, not storage tubs. I wouldn't think storage tubs would be dangerous to plant veggies in - I mean, people put CLOTHES and toys and such in them, right?
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Post  sanderson 8/9/2016, 2:38 am

BleuJay, Welcome to the Forum from California! glad you\'re here This thread is an old one from 2013. Not that there is anything wrong with picking up an older thread instead of starting a new one, in fact, if it fits, use it! Wink To see the year of posts, go to your profile and select the date format that also reflects the year.

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Post  AtlantaMarie 8/9/2016, 8:01 am

Hi BlueJayLady. Welcome from Atlanta, GA!

While clothes, etc. can be stored in containers that are not food-safe, fruits & veggies will absorb some of the chemicals into their systems & then pass them on to us.

The food-safe #'s are:

1, if properly cleaned EVERY time

2, SOMETIMES

4 & 5

Here are a couple of links:

http://modernsurvivalblog.com/preps/safe-plastics-for-food-and-drink/

http://www.wikihow.com/Identify-Food-Grade-Buckets

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Post  sfg4uKim 8/9/2016, 2:33 pm

I see them listed on my HD page for $8.97 or a pack of 5 for $40.97.

It says they are "Made of Polypropylene Plastic".

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Post  MrBooker 8/10/2016, 6:15 am

@aerodyne wrote:Here is the reply I got from Homz:

Thank you for your interest in Home Products International.  Our Durabilt totes are made of polyethylene or polypropylene, depending on the model.  We do not manufacture with food grade resin as would be used in food storage containers as they are not made for food storage.  The 15 gallon tough tote is currently being purchased by Wal-Mart.

aerodyne
Good info Aerodyne. I am growing sweet potatoes in two Homz, 18 gallon totes from Wal-Mart. Cost $4.00 each. My wife just bought two more of them for next year. I'm not too worried if their food grade or not.
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