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I plan on using containers of various sizes (10L, 20L, 200L, 1000L) for growing vegetables for fun but have impediments to providing drainage holes, such as:

  • no large enough tray available
  • pot material too fragile to drill
  • container needs to be repurposed after 1 season.

Can this work?

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The larger size (200 and 1000 litre) containers are likely to be so heavy that they could be more than the load bearing capacity of the balcony. It's a difficult to be precise as there are too many variables such as the water/soil ratio and the load capacity of the balcony. Water weighs one kilogram per litre and soil might range from .2 to .4 kilogram per water when dry and more when wet.

Stick to the smaller pots and distribute them on the balcony to spread the load

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It might work, probably not. Precautions:

  • Be prepared to lose the first harvest and some of the later ones to root rot.
  • Lay a layer of stones at the bottom to give water a place to accumulate.
  • Dig a vertical tunnel to those stones and observe for stale water accumulation.
  • Observe the soil surface. If it is moist, don't water.
  • You will quickly learn the signs of root rot - yellowing leafs all over the plant.
  • If (when) overwatered, turn the soil as much and as often as possible to promote evaporation.

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