Main Container

by /u/ekrof

Space Buckets can be created with a wide variety of containers. The original design features 5gal buckets which are cheap (or free) and easy to find, but many other plastic containers have been tested successfully. Supersized bins and Brute buckets are a great alternative for bucketeers that want more space for their plants. Boxes and totes are another great option that allows for high wattage lighting.


5gal are the smallest size for Space Buckets

The best kind of buckets to build Space Buckets are of the 5gal variety. This size has a very small footprint and allows for one plant cultivation. When in doubt, go with 5gal containers: the community has a lot of experience using them, and they are many examples and tips for this design. The best feature of 5gal buckets is that they are easily stackable, which makes them naturally modular. A 5gal bucket with a 135w UFO and 5630SMD LEDs will provide solid performance for all kinds of plants.


Supersized containers have evolved alongside the classic Space Bucket design. This option is perfect for gardeners that wish to grow bigger plants, or for those who feel constrained by the dimensions of the 5gal bucket. Brute buckets are sold by Rubbermaid, and work very well for SB gardening: these containers are sturdy, stackable and easy to expand. There are 10gal, 20gal and 32gal options, which can all be used for Space Bucketing. The 10gal brutes are a safe step up from the original containers. The only real disadvantage of Brutes is their price and general availability. The Simple LED Brute by /u/halfmpty is a great example for this kind of style.


A cheaper alternative to Brute containers are plastic garbage bins, which are easier to find and also come in a wide variety of sizes. These containers work well for SB gardens, but they are usually not stackable, which makes them harder to tweak. This is a good option for bucketeers that want a big garden with materials that they already have around the house. Brutes or Bins, given their supersized nature, need extra lighting power to function properly. A UFO LED light is the minimum viable solution for supersized main lighting. LED strips are also essential for these kind of builds: multiple strips can be installed in the container to reach the lower parts of the plants.


Totes can be used to grow two plants at once

A Space Bucket can also be made with plastic boxes, generally known as totes. These rectangular containers are even bigger than supersized Brutes, and usually come in various versions. They have a bigger footprint than buckets, buy they allow for more powerful designs. Tote gardens stack two containers on top of each other, with one inverted functioning as the light-top. This means that the SB tote design features a fixed height. Given their massive size, SB totes need powerful lighting from all sides, with a 300w UFO LED panel being the most recommended option.