Monday, January 17, 2011

DIY Gardening: Seedling Growing Cart

There is nothing that makes me angrier than seeing items cost a large quantity of money that if you put a little thought to it, would be easy to make. Recently, I saw a growing cart on a garden supply website. Basically it was a wire shelving until with growing lamps attached to each shelf. 

It cost $500.

I do find a growing cart extremely useful when starting seedlings in early February (for those in the Southeast - according to the Farmer's Almanac). I had multiple flats of seedlings that I started way to late last year that could have benefited from a structure with multiple levels and growing lamps. I was resolved to create my own.

What you'll need;
Wire shelving unit (3 shelves) ($35)
(3) growing lamps ($8 each)
(6) S-Hooks
Power strip

The first thing you'll have to do is put the shelving unit together. The great part with the wire shelf that I got at Walmart was that you could adjust it to any height you wanted. I made the top two shelves compatible with flats of seedlings and the last more compatible for taller seedlings/plants to provide a progressive experience once my seedlings and even bulbs got taller but weren't transplanted yet. 

Once the shelf is put together it's time to attach the growing lamp to the top of each shelf. Each growing lamp has a holes on the back to allow you to attach it to a number of different items. I found a small S-hook works perfectly. I bought two hanging plant kits to obtain different sizes of S-hooks. The smaller 1-inch ones fit perfectly. Insert one end of the hook in the top and rotate it 1/4 turn. Repeat on the other side and then hang on the wire rack above the shelf. Repeat for all three lamps. 

Then take the cords and with a twist tie run the cords toward the back pole and down to the bottom. Plug them into the power strip.

Total for my Growing Cart $75.  Growing your own plants from seeds? Priceless....


  1. What a great post! Thanks. And the huge selection you can get with seeds versus six-packs from HD, etc. is phenomenal. Now I just have to get my courage back to try again. I had a total failure from my seeds damping off, but after reading your post I feel the urge to try again!

  2. Great tutorial! We have the same set up, except our shelves are black. We are zone 4a and don't get to start seeds for at least another month:)

  3. very neat! will definitely try this! what type of growing lamps did you purchase?

  4. What a great idea!!! I plan to put this idea to use and to present to my garden clubs members!!

  5. Can you tell me where you found the grow lights for $8 each? Thanks!


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