Frequently Asked Questions
Does the EarthBox really work?
Our studies have shown that the EarthBox can double yields, using less water and fertilizer compared to conventional gardening. More importantly, thousands of EarthBox customers prove our claims every time they plant. We’re so sure that the EarthBox will work for you; we offer a one year satisfaction guarantee. That’s right, you can use the EarthBox all season long and if it doesn’t produce as advertised, we will promptly refund your purchase price.*
* Guarantee only applies to boxes bought directly from EarthBox and does not include shipping and handling.
Where can I purchase EarthBoxes near my home?
The EarthBox is available at retailers across the country. The Dealer Locator has information on all EarthBox registered retailers, but if your local garden center does not carry the EarthBox, please let us know.
How large is the EarthBox?
The dimensions of the EarthBox are 29" L x 13.5" W x 11" H.
What should I do if I have poor soil in my area?
Since The EarthBox uses potting mix available at any garden center, soil conditions in your area mean nothing. In fact many people have tremendous EarthBox gardens on their patios, balconies and decks.
What is the best way to control weeds in my garden?
Since the potting mix in The EarthBox is covered, weeds don’t even have a chance to start. There’s never any need to pull weeds or use herbicides.
When should I add water?
You can’t over water, so don’t try to regulate the moisture level in the potting mix. Keep the reservoir filled. When the plants are small, add water every few days. As they grow larger, add water more often. You can easily assess the water usage by the time it takes the water to pour from the overflow hole. Never let the reservoir go dry.
I think my plants are getting too much/too little water. Can I manually adjust the watering?
The EarthBox has been designed so that you can’t over water and the only way to underwater is to let the water reservoir run dry. Remember, plants are taking the exact amount of water they need from the reservoir-no more and no less. Resist the temptation to second-guess the system, as this will only lessen results.
What time of day should I water my garden?
Water the EarthBox when it is convenient for you. Just remember to never let the reservoir run dry.
What is Dolomite? Is it used only for tomato plants?
Dolomite, or hydrated lime, can be used for any plant, although it is critical for healthy tomatoes. Tomato plants need a lot of calcium in order to produce healthy fruit; dolomite satisfies this requirement.
What kind of potting mixture should I use?
Almost any brand of peat based potting mix for containers or hanging plants will work. You’ll need 2 cubic feet (quarts) per box and 1 cup of dolomite or hydrated lime. Try to find potting mix without fertilizer already mixed in.
What kind of fertilizer does the EarthBox need?
Each time you plant in the EarthBox, use two cups of a dry granular fertilizer or plant food for vegetables. The three numbers of the elements making up the fertilizer content should be in the range of 5 to 15; i.e., 12-8-10, 10-10-10. After you have applied the fertilizer stripe, no additional fertilizer will be needed.
How do I know when to fertilize my plants?
With the EarthBox system you fertilize only one time-when you first set it up. Use just two cups of almost any fertilizer and the plants will have just as much as they want, when they want it. You can’t over or under feed. Avoid fertilizers that are mixed with water.
Can I use organic fertilizer?
Many EarthBox gardeners prefer growing their plants organically. There are several brands of dry granulated organic fertilizer (Plant Right, Fertrell, etc.) that can be used by replacing the 2 cups of chemical fertilizer with 3 cups of organic fertilizer. We have added a 5-6-6 OMRI listed organic fertilizer to our product list.
Can I use liquid fertilizer or fertilizers that are mixed with water?
Years of scientific research have gone into determining the type, quantity and placement of fertilizer to maximize plant health and production. Liquid fertilizers defeat the purpose of the EarthBox system as nutrients are not provided on a constant stable basis. Two cups of a dry fertilizer are all your plants will need in the EarthBox.
Can I purchase supplies like fertilizer, dolomite and potting mix at a garden center?
Which type of grow light is best for my growing needs?
Metal halide lights produce a strong output of the blue spectrum, which will result in strong plant growth. It is the best type of light to be used as a primary light source (if little or no natural sunlight is available).
Should I do anything special for tomato plants?
Most varieties require a higher pH level of potting mix. Simply mix one cup of dolomite or hydrated lime to the top 2-3 inches of potting mix (before adding the fertilizer strip) to raise the pH. The EarthBox will do the rest.
Is it correct to place only 2 tomato plants in the EarthBox?
Through years of experimentation, we have developed the optimal number and arrangement of each type of plant. Please refer to Here’s How The EarthBox Works for a complete list.
What if I need support stakes for my tomato plants?
Tomatoes, eggplant, cucumbers, beans and other vine plants need support. The EarthBox now offers an optional staking system that integrates with the EarthBox container. This eliminates the need for awkward wire plant cages or trellises.
How can I prevent splitting tomatoes?
Tomatoes will split when (1) there is lots of heat and lots of rain or (2) if very dry weather is followed by two days of rainfall. It is really caused by the drastic change in the amount of water in the fruit along with the heat. You can cover your plants with shade cloth to cut the amount of heat and always remember to keep the water resevoir full so the plants always have a consistant supply of water.
What can I do to prevent black spots on the bottom of my tomatoes?
The black on the bottom of your tomatoes is called "blossom end rot." It is caused by a lack of calcium and other ingredients from the potting mix. Adding 2 cups of hydrated lime to the potting mix before planting as in the instructions can help prevent the blossom end rot from forming. In the event the blossom end rot still presents itself mix 1/4 cup of hydrated lime with one gallon of water and add that to the resevior the next time you fill your Earthbox with water.
What can I do if beetles or tiny black bugs are on and near my plants?
Spray with BT (Bacillus thuringiensis), a very good all-purpose solution. This is not a chemical and will do no harm if sprayed on the skin.
Can I remove the plastic cover once the plants have started growing?
You should never remove the cover until you’re ready to replant. The EarthBox cover is an integral part of the EarthBox gardening system. The cover helps to keep your potting mix moist; it keeps the weather away from your fertilizer and the cover helps to stop weeds and other unwanted plants from getting into your EarthBox.
Is the EarthBox reusable? How do I replant my plants?
Absolutely. Simply remove your old plants, the old fertilizer strip and some of the surrounding potting mix. Decide what you are going to plant in your EarthBox and refer to the plant placement guide to know where the fertilizer and plants need to be placed. Top the EarthBox off with some fresh potting mix; create a mound with the fresh potting mix where the fertilizer strip will be placed. Pour 2 cups of fertilizer in a 2-inch-wide strip on top of the newly created mound, recover the box and replant. You can use the same potting mix for 5 growing seasons and the EarthBox for many years.
During the winter, is it necessary to remove the soil/dirt/plantings-to prevent frost breaking the container?
In order to prepare your EarthBox for winter, we recommend that you remove the old plants, cover and fertilizer. Place a new cover on your Earthbox and drain the remaining water.
Can I place different plants in the same box? If so, how many?
Refer to the Plant Placement Guide. If the plants have the same configuration, they can be successfully mixed in the EarthBox.
How long from the time I place the order until I receive it?
4-8 business days from the time the order is placed, except for Hawaii, Guam, Alaska, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands and other US territories.
Can I ship to a different location?
Yes, but shipping charges will be based on the products going to each separate location.
Do you include gift cards?
Please fill out the designated portion of the order form located in Order Now.