Small Space Gardening- Vertical "bed"

I saw a structure built out of wood at the Chicago Botanical Gardens in the small garden section that basically was a wood frame say 6' high x 5' wide x 1' deep. It had landscape fabric on the front (I assume the back was solid) and had the plants poking out through holes cut in the fabric. You can grow herbs, vegetables or flowers. Basically, you are getting 30 Sq Ft of gardening space in a 5 SQ Ft footprint. Obviously, you probably couldn't grow watermelons or something like that (possibly on the bottom) , but I think most things would work.
My question is has anyone built something similar and how did you do it? My concern is keeping the dirt in and adding dirt through the small holes cut in the landscape fabric. Maybe they are able to add dirt from the top or the back?? Any ideas/suggestions are welcome. I need to get over there when it warms up to get a closer look at how they built theirs.
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I can't address the construction issue, but you definitely *can* grow melons by building a strong frame on one side of the structure, for the vines to grow on, and hanging the melons in hammock-style things. I made mine out of plastic bird mesh, which was strong enough for cantelopes. Obviously, you'd need something much stronger for watermelons, but it can be done.
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I love the groundhog ladies with big melons.
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I haven't done it (I have plenty of room) but clearly many people have. If you google "vertical garden" you will get a zillion hits.
David
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I already tried that. Most have to do with vines,arbors and trellises from what I can tell.
David Hare-Scott wrote:

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Maybe you should make a list of the vegetables you'd like to grow, and show us the list. Some plants have rather brittle stems, and will break if grown in odd ways. I don't mean to shoot down your idea, because it sounds cool, but maybe you should take a step back for a moment.

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I am interested in mostly herbs and possibly tomatoes with some danglers like sweet potatoe vine for decoration.
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