Like many urban spaces, space can be tight and like a concrete jungle, natural light can be highly diffused and outdoor water sources can be scarce—which is why a vertical woolly pocket garden can be a creative and rewarding solution.
For our summer catalog, the location was sheer brick and concrete so we added lots of greenery to the walls and transformed the space into a lush, almost tropical getaway with 28 pockets.
Made from 100% recycled plastic water bottles, the pockets are soft and pliable. They’re also modular and a breeze to install—just overlap the grommets and ‘wallpaper’ the space, which eventually will be completely covered with foliage. Grommet to grommet, they’re 22” across and 13” vertically—using these measurements, we recommend measuring the full wall to calculate how many pockets would be needed to fill it and to map the installation.
hint: to mount or attach them, hardware is included but we always recommend checking with a local hardware store for the best type to suit your walls.
The felt-like material is breathable—which, unlike container gardening, eliminates the need for drainage—but each pocket includes a moisture barrier to protect the walls that support them. Much like a self-watering planter, they’re engineered so roots feed from the bottom via a ‘tongue’ that wicks moisture to plant roots as needed and emulates natural conditions.
Once the pockets were secured, we planted 3-4 plants per pocket—the 6” pot size of Boston fern, creeping fig, and needlepoint ivy. All of these plants are great outdoors in the spring and summer—after all danger of frost—but are only hardy in zones 7-10. So if you live in a different zone and want to recreate this look, check with a local nursery to see what’s best for your area.
For a broader range of zones, following is a short list of optional plants—bountiful blue® blueberry, banana split® soft leaf yucca, adams needle, austral gem ‘bird’s nest fern’, holly fern, leatherleaf fern, gold fountains sedge, sparkler sedge, apricot queen New Zealand flax, compact sprenger asparagus fern, and creeping lilyturf.
hint hint: woolly pocket gardens also make great flower or herb gardens.