How to Make a Winter Garden from Shipping Container

It is often that we get brilliant ideas at the time they are impossible to be pursued, such as wishing we could grow some vegetable in the garden during Christmas time. Yet, with a bit of ingenuity and proper equipment, this can actually be accomplished! To take it up a notch and aid yourself greatly in the process, you may wish to explore the possibilities of making shipping container your veggie pod and munching on fresh greens in the winter time.

Winter garden ideas

Garden 101

Before rushing into the out of season gardening adventure, you should pack your brain with relevant information about the whole process. You can grow it both in soil outside, or in a water-like solution inside the shipping container. You’d need seeds, nutrients and a proper cover or shelter to protect the crop from freezing and dying. Mostly green plants are tried out in such gardening ventures, but others vegetables and plants can be grown there too.

Winter Garden

Soil garden

If you decide to employ the shipping container for this type of planting, you should remove the unnecessary parts of the shipping containers and cut them apart in a proper manner. Thus you enable them to act as a shelter for our favorite healthy bite. You should place seeds and root crops in the ground either early in the fall or late in the summer time. This type of gardening basically relies on the sun and warm conditions in the winter time to promote growth. Start by mixing compost with the soil. Add seeds according to the package instructions. Roots should be planted before the first frost event. Add mulch in the form of moss, sawdust or newspaper shreds to warm up the soil.  The plants you can produce via this method include carrots, beets, parsnips, onions, broccoli, cauliflower, radishes, chives, various types of lettuce and many others.

Hydroponic garden

This type of garden has caused a real explosion of positive reactions after it was combined with the shipping container as a life generating capsule. It acts as isolator from the aggressive weather conditions and an insulator to provide warmer environment and save energy. The practice relies on nutrient packed water in which you soak the roots and LED lights to provide the heat. Newest pod projects display a whole array of fancy gear such as monitors for humidity, temperature, pH, carbon dioxide levels and others to optimize the conditions and promote its growing potential. It can be easily adjusted via remote control. What’s really impressive is that these pods can produce an acre worth of vegetables, and they are eco-friendly. No pesticides, far less fertilizer and 90% less water is used than on the regular farms. They are becoming extremely popular with the restaurants, but you can buy the whole apparatus for smaller scale use and give it a go. It is a truly amazing marriage of components and methods. The plants tried out so far are mostly greens, but you may experiment with other plants as well.

Plants ideas for winter garden


Whether you decide on soil or hydroponic garden, you are embarking on a fantastic food growing journey. While pods take urban agriculture to a higher level, soil gardening is a somewhat traditional and charming way of exploiting shipping containers for a holiday season fresh salad.



Written by:  Sophie Andersen

Penny for your thoughts...