Milk crates are a simple and versatile vehicle for growing herbs indoors, and urban farming outdoors at ground level or on rooftops successfully. These modular systems can be small – like our indoor mint garden at b.good – or very large – like the 1,800 square feet of growing space at Fenway Farms. Supplement a raised bed garden with small patio planters, or construct an enormous, but moveable, farm on a rooftop or in a vacant lot!
On the Move
One of the best reasons for growing in milk crates? Their versatility.
Milk crates are stackable and movable non-permanent structures, which allows for creative and elaborate outdoor designs that can be reconfigured as needed again and again. Riverpark Farm in New York City was born from a stalled construction site. When developers faced a “stalled site” in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, they filled the vacant land with a number of milk crates and made it a productive space. Now, developers everywhere are following this trend, converting temporarily vacant lots into urban farms, which can be moved to new sites upon commencement of building.
Example Modular Systems
- Sasaki Associates in Watertown, MA supplements their raised bed garden with a milk crate herb garden
- The Brandeis University rooftop milk crate farm is constructed from modular crates
- The 1,800 square feet of growing space at Fenway Farms is comprised entirely of milk crates
- Indoor growing systems at b.good house mint for use in smoothies
Modular Growing System Pricing
Pricing for milk crate farms is determined on a site-by-site basis according to location (indoors requires structure and grow lights), size of the growing system, and in the case of rooftops, structure. The range for rooftops is $25-$50 per square foot.