How to Build a Window Farm

There are a number of reasons for choosing to grow your own food. For one, food is sometimes cultivated using techniques that not only reduce its nutritional value, but can actually be harmful to health. Plant produce may be sprayed with pesticides, herbicides and other harmful chemicals. Also, food often travels great distances to reach market shelves. This reduces its nutritional value to a fraction of what it originally had, and inflicts a great deal of harm on our planet because of the energy and fuel required to store and transport food. However, those of us who live in small homes or apartments do not have the space needed to cultivate food by conventional means. The window farm is a new concept that tries addressing this challenge. And what's more, you can build one using mostly-recycled materials and some electricity.


  1. 1
    Have one empty bottle for each type of plant.
  2. 2
    Cut off the bottoms of each bottle with the blade.
  3. 3
    Hold each bottle inverted (neck down) and place a few clay fired pebbles into the bottles through the sliced-off bottom. If the pellets have a tendency to fall out of the bottle's mouth, place a piece of cloth in the neck and then add the pebbles. These pebbles act as soil, holding enough water for the roots and also allowing for air to pass.
  4. Image titled The clay fired pebbles hold the plant in place, and allow it to absorb nutrients from the nutrient solution
    Place a sampling or plant cutting in each of these bottles. Then, add more pebbles to hold the sapling in place
  5. Image titled Arrangement of the bottles
    Fasten the cord to the 'waist' or neck of each of these bottles, looping it around each bottle, and connecting it to the next one. The idea is that the cord should be able to hold each of these bottles so that when hung by the cord, the mouth of one leads into the bottom of the one below it.
  6. 6
    Hang this arrangement from your windowsill
  7. 7
    Prepare a nutrient solution and pour this solution into one of the tumblers.
  8. 8
    Place one end of the pipe in this tumbler, and the other leading into the bottom of the topmost bottle (the bottom of the bottle will be at the very top of the arrangement)
  9. 9
    Place the other tumbler at the bottom of the arrangement, to collect water coming through the mouth of the lowermost bottle
  10. 10
    Arrange the pump for pumping water from the nutrient-rich tumbler, into the pipe, so that it is transmitted to the bottles. You now have a working window garden.


  • Please understand that although most hydroponic systems ("hydroponics" means growing plants in a water-based solution) need an aquarium air pump to aerate the plants, this one needs a small pump for pumping water instead
  • Some of the supplies mentioned below will need to be purchased from a hydroponics store. This especially includes the clay fired pebbles and nutrient solution. However, if you want to be innovative, you may replace the pebbles with pieces of sponge, or hay. If you have the expertise, you may also prepare your own nutrient solution

Things You'll Need

  • Empty water bottles
  • Two bigger bottles, or tumblers
  • A water pump
  • Clay fired pebbles
  • Plastic pipes
  • Thin rope or a strong cord
  • Small blade or knife
  • Cloth (optional)
  • Electric supply
  • Hydroponics nutrient powder

Article Info

Categories: Farming