I discovered a way that you can build your own vertical rain garden if you want to save money (about $200 vs $1,000). The result does not look as polished as buying a finished decorative rain barrel. Plus, you will need to install your own irrigation system. However, it provides an option, and you can make it fairly easily.
DIY Vertical Rain Garden Tips that Will Save You Time
Essentially, the idea involves using a sturdy rain barrel with a planter top. Instead of placing flowers in the top planter, take wire fencing, landscape fabric and zip ties and extend the planter vertically. The video below shows how to do it:
Of course, the wire fencing does not have as much stability as the metal frame of the garden . Plus, if you don’t need a tall planter, this will not matter. However, if you want a taller structure, you will need to secure it against a wall.
When shopping for a rain barrel base for your plants, look for a model that includes either a diverter or an attachment for the downspout to fit into. Hence, you won’t have to spend extra money to buy a diverter system to direct the water into your rain collector.
The Planter Urn Rain Barrel to the right includes a downspout deflector for the water to flow into. Plus it has a debris screen to catch any debris that may flow down the downspout. It also comes with a spigot and with garden hose. The water capacity is 54 gallons.
The Good Ideas Rain Wizard Urn provides another option with a similar design. The main differences come down to the size (65 gallon capacity vs 54 gallons) and the Wizard has a flat back, which makes it easier to fit snugly against a wall. he rain barrel also comes in 8 different colors, including terra cotta, light granite, sandstone and other neutral colors.
If you want to build your rain barrel from scratch using a 55 gallon drum, plastic bucket, gutter extension, a spigot, some cinder blocks and a drill, see this page.