Reaching food autonomy… in his swimming pool!

Comments: 9
By: James Fry
November 25, 2012

Over the Thanksgiving holiday I was back in Arizona and had the great opportunity to stop by the Garden Pool and interview the creator Dennis McClung.

In the interview I ask him a few questions about what inspired the Garden Pool, how much time he invests in it and what he is able to produce from it. In summary, Dennis tells us how his pool to farm conversion was inexpensive, didn’t take much time and now provides his
family of 5 with 50 to 75% of their food needs. Let’s face it, this is simply AMAZING!

Enjoy the video, soon I will be doing a case study on the Garden Pool that will show the cost/benefit of such a project and show that it’s economically worth while for anyone to produce their own food at home.

Check out for more information AND to DONATE to their upcoming humanitarian project in Haiti!

Reaching food autonomy… in his swimming pool!

9 thoughts on “Reaching food autonomy… in his swimming pool!

  1. Obviously, they can’t swim in this anymore. IMO, this is a huge waste of water. In ground pools hold anywhere between 10-20 thousand gallons of water. That’s a LOT more than you’d need for any other method of gardening to produce the same amount of food, plus, you lose a way to cool off and exercise in the desert heat. Sorry, but that’s a losing situation, times three.

    1. Hey Julie, all good points for sure.

      I think the issue they had was that they were going to have to resurface the pool (around $10-15K) and rather than spend that kind of money they decided to turn it into something they valued more for a much smaller investment.

      Keep growing!


  2. Hy.I am another wanderer between methods to get some foot at home.By chance I founded your site and stayed curious about your proposed method/ Form the sources you show there aren’t any details about the hands on of the method/ How can I get some detailed intructions?

  3. Hi James your article is inspiring. I am from Kenya and just wonder how I can achieve this considering the economic challenges faced in our country. I grow most of my foods but wish to reach your level. Please assist.

  4. I am interested in learning how to grow my own food and also make some money going commercial in the future.

  5. Heck, I think they did a great job with the pool.
    Throw a little concrete Island in the middle & you have a cool place to play cards, eat, drink & talk surrounded by food!

    Do you think a garden can survive & grow well if it is planted on top of sewer drainage in the back yard?

    1. Haha fun idea, Phillip.
      I think a garden can do well on top of a leech field, but depends on how much seepage etc.
      They grow food in the “black water” cells at Earthship Biotecture.
      They even did a study to test the level of poo pathogens and it came back the same as grocery store produce, which is interesting.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

November 25, 2012

Posted In: Uncategorized




Hi, I'm James! Here you can find resources and inspiration to help you grow your own REAL food with LESS time, money, and effort than you thought possible.


Here at you can find resources and inspiration to help you grow your own REAL food with LESS time, money, and effort than you thought possible.