In This Issue
EarthBox Education
Starting Plants from Seed
Fresh from the Forum
Retailer of the Month
From Our Customers
Join Our Community
About EarthBox
EarthBox Education:
EarthBoxes Join
Revitalization Effort

Recently, the EarthBox gardening system became an integral part of LakewoodAlive, the nonprofit  economic development organization that's leading the revitalization of the historic downtown commercial district of Lakewood, Ohio.


Downtown Lakewood, the volunteer-based revitalization program handling the effort, is using the National Main Street approach outlined by the National Trust for Historic Preservation (of which LakewoodAlive is a member). In line with Main Street objectives, beautification of the Lakewood commercial district was identified as a priority in 2005.

The maintenance demands and expense associated with traditional plantings and hanging baskets limited the success of early efforts to beautify the district with flowers. So in 2007, they started a pilot program using three EarthBoxes on the window sill of the Chamber of Commerce office, where LakewoodAlive shared space.



The impatiens, located on the shady side of the street, were spectacular -- and  required watering only every two or three weeks! Based on this result, LakewoodAlive applied for a small grant to expand the program. Volunteers started the Downtown Lakewood Blossoms program in 2008, providing planted EarthBoxes to downtown Lakewood businesses for a nominal fee. Thanks to the assistance of the volunteers, and the reuse option of EarthBoxes, the very reasonable pricing also covers delivery and pick-up at the beginning and end of the season.

In 2009, with the help of a local municipal judge, community service workers were assigned once a week watering duty. The results were fabulous! The lush boxes gave tangible evidence to the community that the district was changing for the better. The community, already renowned for its walkability, was very receptive to the idea of improving the pedestrian experience in the primary business district. There are now 33 EarthBoxes beautifying the area with petunias, begonias, lobelia, sweet potato vine, geraniums, and coleus.


"EarthBoxes provide Lakewood with a low-maintenance, low-cost solution to our streetscape beautification needs," says Mary Anne Crampton, Executive Director of LakewoodAlive. "Located at business doorways and in planting areas on the sidewalk, the lush boxes provide beautiful green relief to our urban concrete landscape."

To start a similar beautification
program in your own community, please contact Molly Philbin of the
EarthBox Education Department, at 1-800-821-8838, ext 8369.
We Have a Winner!

We've chosen the latest winner in our ongoing "Grab Some Free Goodies" contest! Carol Papke of Chicago, Illinois will receive a $25 EarthBox gift certificate for her wonderful photo. We'll be posting more winners as we choose them -- and we're still waiting to hear from you! Here's Carol's winning entry:

"I thought you might like to see another use for the EarthBox when it's not the growing season in Chicago!"

consumer - tomato from seed

Grab Some Free Goodies!
Want to win an EarthBox gift certificate? Just send us your best EarthBox-related recipe, article, or photo, and you might find yourself a winner. 
Here are the categories we'd like you to shoot for: 
  • A helpful story that provides EarthBox owners with information
  • A story on your most successful crop
  • A photo illustrating a successful EarthBox crop
  • Your greatest number of EarthBoxes in use at once
  • Your best disaster story, so everyone can learn from your mistakes
  • Your quickest recipe using an EarthBox harvest
  • Your spiciest recipe using an EarthBox harvest
  • Articles on non-traditional uses of the EarthBox

Your entry should be brief and to the point. We'll pick a new winner every month, and we'll post each winner in an upcoming issue.

Send your contest entries to, with the word "contest" in the subject line, and we'll take a look!

Quick Links

MGA Logo
Home Gardening Seal

Welcome to a new year of EarthBox Gardening! We hope this is a fruitful and rewarding one for you.

Depending on where you live, some of you may already be starting your 2010 seedlings indoors. On the other hand, some of you may be considering planting from seed, so you may be sifting through seed catalogs or already organizing your seeds for planting.

Planting seeds in the EarthBox adds another dimension to the joy of growing your own fruits, vegetables and flowers. If you haven't already, now's the time to start planning. Read on for seed-planting tips from master gardeners, as well as from our own EarthBox growers.

Happy Seeding!

Frank's Signature
Frank DiPaolo
logo small Starting Plants from Seed 

January is a good time to window shop and plan your EarthBox garden -- and if you're planning to grow from seed, it's just about time to get started. By now, you may have already ordered seeds from a catalog; if not, it's not too late to order, or even to buy seed from a local garden center.


While we recommend planting seedlings or small starter plants in the EarthBox, some crops do just fine in an EarthBox when planted from seed, and some do better than others. This is an excellent option, in fact, if you live in a warmer clime with a long growing season. Whether you plant vegetables, fruits or flowers, we recommend that you consult with a local expert or your agricultural extension agent for advice on which seeds are most appropriate for your climate.

Seeds should be planted in the EarthBox in the same manner as seedlings: cut the required number of holes in the cover, and plant your seeds directly into the potting medium. Each seed packet should provide planting depth information, so read it carefully; however, a general rule to follow is to plant a seed as deep as the seed is large. That is, a half-inch sunflower seed should be planted about a half-inch deep.

Keep in mind that not all seeds in a seed packet will germinate successfully. In fact, some types of seeds, especially onion and garlic, may have a very low germination rate. Older seed packets will also have lower rates of germination success than new ones. In that case, plant two or more seeds in each hole. After your sprouts are a few inches high, thin the plants to one per hole by pinching off the smallest sprouts at their bases. Doing so will help ensure that you have healthy sprouts throughout your EarthBox. Watch your sprouts to make sure that they don't come up under the cover. If they do, you'll need to widen the hole.

Table 2 at this Texas A&M University website lists some of the more popular vegetables that can be successfully grown from seed in containers, along with information on their germination and harvest times.


Seeding directly into your EarthBoxes is a very simple matter, as long as you follow these few basic guidelines. We wish you luck and bountiful harvests!

Fresh from the Forum
Which Seeds Do Well in the EarthBox?

fresh from forum 1It may be more common for growers to plant seedlings in their EarthBoxes, but you can definitely have great success with seeds. For an accounting of which plants do well in EarthBoxes when planted from seed, consult the wisdom of your fellow EarthBoxers by visiting the Forum and reviewing conversations like this one and this one.

Retailer of the Month
Armstrong Garden Centers
Every month, we highlight one of our valued partners, so you can learn more about them and their products. This month, we salute Armstrong Garden Centers in California. 

Armstrong "planted their first seed" in 1889, and have been serving the community ever since. With over 100 acres of growing grounds and greenhouses, their commitment to a healthy environment and attractive, sustainable landscapes is easily evident. 

ARMSTRONG-2Roses are a specialty at Armstrong, and the selection of varieties is vast. In addition, Armstrong has a sweeping array of edible products, including citrus, fruit and nut trees, organic vegetables, herbs, and vine fruits.  Whether you're gardening inside or out, there are house and landscape plants to suit every home. Those who seek indoor comfort for outdoor entertaining will find furniture, outdoor kitchens and other home accents at Armstrong. Their "Always in Bloom" containers and baskets are ideal for those who love plants but have limited time for gardening.
Monthly classes and online garden guides offer invaluable advice for the novice and avid gardener, as they provide tips on pruning, feeding and care, check lists, and even success stories through Armstrong's online community.
With 33 locations covering Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego Counties and the Bay Area, there's sure to be an Armstrong Garden Center near you.  For store locations and hours, click here.

Corporate Office Information:

2200 E. Route 66
Suite 200
Glendora, CA  91740
From Our Customers
 One Box, One Plant!

consumer - tomato from seed"Hello, all! This past year, one of my experiments involved putting only one San Marzano Redorta tomato plant in an EarthBox. I wanted to see what one plant would do alone. Well, EarthBox has brought this San Marzano to its knees!! 


"I started it from seed. The fruit set was pretty heavy to begin with, and the tomatoes just kept getting larger and larger. What was a nice straight and thick 'trunk' (stem) has now been bent under the weight of the tomatoes.


"I am convinced that in 2010, I will need more EarthBoxes, because I plan to have several single-plant tomato EarthBoxes. 


"We're building a stronger support system for this EarthBox. The tomatoes are not even ripe yet, and are already pulling the plant down. The plant has fruit trusses all the way to the top -- and I don't want it to fall over."

Dancing Lemons

Richmond, Virginia

Zone 7

Join Our Community

EarthBox is on Facebook!  Now you can become a fan of EarthBox, joining a community of fellow EarthBox users for conversations, advice and photo sharing -- or just to check out whatever new information EarthBox has to enhance your gardening experience!

To place an order, call us at 866-727-5532 (24/7) or visit our online store.

About EarthBox 
The patented EarthBox was developed by commercial farmers, and proven in the lab and on the farm. Our maintenance-free, award-winning, high-tech growing system controls soil conditions, eliminates guesswork, and more than doubles the yield of a conventional garden -- with less fertilizer, less water and virtually no effort. It's used successfully on a daily basis by commercial farmers, educators, and consumers. Distributors are also finding it to be a popular growing system.
EarthBox is a remarkably easy-to-set-up system that can be used to grow produce virtually anywhere. EarthBox systems have been incorporated into community gardens all over the world, enabling families and neighbors to share fresh produce, while minimizing work and expenses. EarthBoxes can even be found in classrooms. Our EarthBox Pre-K through 12th grade standards-based curriculum support packages can bring science to life, with hands-on cross-curricula lessons that teach principles of growing and nutrition utilizing the scientific method in student-driven experiments.

To find out more, visit  
EarthBox® 1350 Von Storch Avenue · Scranton, PA 18509 · 1-866-727-5532