We are often asked about Algae.  Algae is a naturally occurring organism which is a result of exposing water containing minerals to sunlight. It isn’t harmful in small amounts.  So what can you do to reduce algae? The best method is prevention. If you keep sunlight out of the Tower Garden, i.e. keep the lids closed and all openings sealed, you can prevent algae from growing. You can remove Algae in the system with a brush or a hydrogen peroxide (3ml of 3% H2O2 per gallon of solution) solution. If there are particles floating in the nutrient solution, be sure to empty and flush the reservoir and growing chamber with ample water, and then start with a new batch of nutrient water. However, if the problem is severe, make sure you have the algae completely flushed out to avoid the risk of clogging some of the drip holes in the system.

Reducing Algae Between Pots

Algae can form between the white pots for a couple of reasons.  First, the pots are not correctly seated and therefore lacking a proper seal.  If this is the case you need to try and push them a little closer together.  If your Tower is already growing with some pretty large plants just tighten the wing nuts a little more and make a note to push down firmly on the center feeder tube next time you take it apart to give it a good clean.  Occasionally you will still get a little mineral build up here due to water resting on the lip.  Just take an old toothbrush, scrub sponge or small scrub brush once a week and give it a little clean.  As long as you do it regularly it will be easy to remove and won’t get out of hand!

algae build up cropped
Algae build up where the pots meet


Reducing Algae inside empty Net Pots

2″ Neoprene inserts can be slipped inside the netpot to stop sunlight getting into the Tower, reacting with the water and causing algae inside the Tower Garden.

Neoprene inserts block sunlight from entering the Tower Garden and causing Algae to form

Those below come in a pack of 50, cost approximately $16 AND and they ship free with Amazon Prime. Not an Amazon Prime member? Don’t worry!  Sign up for a 30 day Free Trial of Amazon Prime here. Prices can change quickly on Amazon so confirm the price before completing your purchase!

21 Thoughts on “Reducing Algae build up in and around your Tower Garden”

  • I have had really good luck cleaning algae off of the outside of the tower with vinegar and baking soda. Is there any reason not to use that combination? I also clean the entire system with that dissolved in water.

  • My algae was white and chalky. What is it? a local person said salt build up. But it was inside and outside and on the plants and net pots…

  • When cleaning the outside I use a good pile of baking soda and mix it with enough vinegar to make a paste and then scrub. It is a heathier version of soft scrub. If I am cleaning the entire system, I mix a cup or so of baking poweder into apple cider vinegar with the mother still included. I then place my tower parts in a tub of water enough to cover the pieces and dump the vinegar/baking soda mixture into the water and let sit for about 30 minutes. I then scrub everything with a soft brush until it’s clean. use a small narrow bottle brush to get the inside of the tube clean.

    Rinse carefully and reassemble for the next season of plants. It’s really quite easy.

  • The problem of cleaning it though with plants still in the TGs, the scale and algae usually falls off into the other plants. I’m thinking outside the box…you think some food grade silicon seal inbetween the pots will work? Its too hard to tighten them any further than what they are now….or leaving a huge gunk of GRAPEFRUIT SEED EXTRACT around the edges? Wonder if that keeps the scale/algae from forming. Its pretty time consuming also to keep after this?? Thanks!

    Good idea about the vinegar…i’ve only used B.soda! I think??? yeah that combo should work better for my annual cleaning!

    • Not sure about the silicon. I just give it a quick wipe with a scrub sponge once a week. It takes just a couple of minutes per tower and there isn’t too much build up if you do it weekly. ☺

  • mine is one the inside pot where the plant is (algae) not on tower itself. Is this going to harm the plant?

    • A small amount of algae is ok. If there s a lot I would use a water and hydrogen peroxide solution to get it under control.

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