A six-pack set that features sizes ranging from 3 to 10 gallons. Has tough handles on the fabric that will give you the ability to carry these bags easily. The fabric of the bags allows air to move through nicely, helping plants grow. Shape of bag has good balance.
No bags larger than the 10-gallon option. Sizes will run small.
Available in multiple sizes, ranging from 1 to 30 gallons, so you have all the versatility you could need. Uses a landscaping fabric for the grow bags, which provides toughness and minimal weight. Fabric is environmentally friendly. Has handles to make the bags easier to move.
Bag sizes tend to run a little small. Mold may grow on outside of bag.
Grow bags that feature multiple sizes from 1 to 15 gallons, making them great for all kinds of situations. Container has an aerated fabric, which ensures your plants can receive the air flow they need to thrive. Great value with 5 grow bags in the set. Tough handles make bags easy to move.
Bags will leak a lot of water. Fabric is very thin and may not last over time.
Even with a thicker fabric in the grow bags, they still give you aeration features that will keep your plants healthier. Tough fabric ensures the bag will stand up better on its own, making it easier to fill with dirt. Available in sizes ranging from 1 to 30 gallons for plenty of options for plant types.
These bags are wider than most, and sizes tend to run a little small.
Available in sizes between 3 and 15 gallons, which means you have quite a few options for the types of plants you place in the grow bags. Handles at the top of the bag give you the opportunity to move it easily. Fabric is lightweight and breathes well, which helps keep the plants' roots aerated.
Bag sizes will run smaller than advertised. Fabric will leak water.
Grow bags are a great alternative to pots for starting plants inside a greenhouse or for the gardener who is short on space. These flexible containers are popular for growing potatoes, but they work well for everything from tomatoes to trees.
Grow bags flatten for easy storage during the winter months and serve as a useful tool for those who lack a permanent garden area.
The BestReviews team has put together this buying guide to grow bags to help you select the best product for your gardening needs. Our guide covers the main features to consider, the price you can expect to pay, and a helpful section of frequently asked question.
If you’re ready to buy some grow bags, the product list at the top of the page showcases our favorite options.
Most gardening pots and containers made of ceramic or other hard materials don’t provide enough aeration and drainage for plants. Grow bags offer many benefits over pots.
Allow plant roots to breathe
Provide better drainage
Use cheaper, denser soil mixes
Are lighter and more portable; easier to position for maximum sun exposure
Require little planning
Easy to empty and store for winter
Excellent for areas with poor soil quality.
Not the most elegant container option
Not an aesthetic every gardener appreciates
Not as durable as ceramic or other hard materials
Typical grow bags range from 1 to 30 gallons in size. Small containers are used for growing seedlings and large ones for trees and other big plants. Use only the size you need. Growing one head of lettuce in a container that’s too large wastes water and soil.
The root depth of your plants will dictate which size grow bag you choose. Depth matters much more than container diameter for plants with complex root systems. A grow bag that’s too small can stunt your plant’s growth by causing it to become root-bound.
Plants like lettuce have shallow roots and are capable of thriving in smaller grow bags.
Tomatoes and peppers have deeper roots that require a deeper, larger grow bag.
Trees have very deep root systems and need large grow bags in order to flourish.
When choosing a grow bag, opt for one with thick walls. A thicker grow bag will last longer and won’t fall apart if you need to move it around your garden.
Fabric: Sturdy fabric won’t crack or break with sun exposure. Many fabric grow bags are made of natural fibers, which some gardeners prefer over synthetic plastic. Fabric is breathable, drains water exceptionally well, and promotes air pruning of plant roots. Air pruning prevents the root circling and tangling that can happen in ceramic and other hard pots and promotes very healthy plant growth.
Some grow bags have sturdy handles for easy transport. Bags with handles are a good choice if you are starting your plants indoors. These bags are easy to move outside once the weather warms. For areas with spotty sunlight exposure, handles enable you to move the grow bags to the sunniest part of your deck or patio as the day goes on.
Colorful bags are a great way to spice up a balcony garden. Dark-colored containers retain heat better than light-colored ones.
In general, the larger the size, the pricier the grow bag.
$5 to $10
Grow bags in this price range are usually intended to last a single season and must be thrown out post-harvest, but you’ll also find some smaller grow bags of better quality at this price point.
$20 and up
At this price, you’ll find sturdier grow bags that you can reuse year after year.
One of the most popular vegetables to grow in grow bags is the humble potato. In a garden bed, potato plants can gobble up a lot of precious real estate. Grow bags are a convenient alternative for spawning spuds from seed potatoes you can purchase from a local nursery or seed distributor.
Choose a grow bag with sides that can be folded down; don’t immediately fill it completely with soil.
Pick a sunny area (potatoes need a lot of sunlight).
For a 12-gallon grow bag, plant three to five seed potatoes; plant up to ten in a 30-gallon container.
Add more soil as your potato plants grow.
Water the plants frequently.
Do not disturb the soil. (Resist the temptation to see what’s going on under the dirt since doing so can damage the plant roots.)
When the plant dries and falls over, it’s time to dig up the potatoes. Digging up potatoes can be a fun family activity – like a fall-themed Easter egg hunt!
Q. I have a shaded deck, can I still grow plants in grow bags?
A. Absolutely. But when growing plants in a shady area, you’ll need to temper your expectations. Plants that require a lot of sun may produce low yields or look stunted if grown in the shade. For a better harvest, plant vegetables that need less sunlight. Leafy greens are a good option for the vegetable gardener. There are also plenty of flowers and nonedible plants that flourish in low-light conditions. Check seed packets for growing information or ask an expert at your local nursery.
Q. Can I reuse the soil in my grow bags next year?
A. Absolutely, but people who don’t have much space may find it easier to store empty grow bags. An ideal place for that dirt is the compost pile.
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