To grow your own fresh fruit and vegetables you don’t need a large garden or allotment. You can easily begin container vegetable gardening on a windowsill, in a hanging basket or out in a small back yard and still get crops all year round.
This guide will get you started.
Growing Vegetables In Containers – Getting Started
There are some vegetables that are easy to grow in even the smallest places. Lettuce leaves and herbs can be grown in pots as small as just 6 inches, ideal for growing vegetables on your windowsill. Lettuce leaves are great for container vegetable gardening, they are quick growing and can be planted year round.
Use larger 10 inch pots to grow bush tomato varieties such as Tiny Tim and Red Cherry, these can be grown on a large windowsill, out on the patio or in a small backyard. Other crops that can be grown in this size pot include dwarf beans, peppers, cucumbers and strawberries.
If you have room for larger pots you have the oppertunity to grow most vegetables.Large pots or compost bags are ideal for growing potatoes in. Special strawberry planters are available from many retailers and give you the chance to get a huge crop of fresh strawberries from a pot. In large pots and containers vegetables such as courgettes, peas, salad leaves and more all thrive. Fruit bushes such as blueberries, special apple trees are all available to grow in containers.
Looking for more guides on growing in containers? Check out these articles:
1). Growing Tomatoes In Containers
There are two different types of tomatoes that can be grown in containers, cordon (tall) varieties and bush tomatoes. Both kinds will grow successfully in a large pot or in growing bags. Bush tomatoes also grow really well in hanging baskets.
Most varieties can be grown either indoors or outdoors but it’s worth checking where the tomato variety you choose will grow. When growing tomatoes in containers it’s important that they are grown in a good compost and kept well watered. Expect tomatoes grown in pots to begin ripening 65 days after planting.
2). Small Carrots Grow Amazingly Well In Pots
Carrots are an amazing crop to grow in containers. By choosing a small variety and selecting a pot the right size you can have good success. If you choose to grow your potatoes in a pot it’s a good idea to use compost or very fine soil as this will allow you to grow the best carrots.
If your carrots are grown in a pot you can totally avoid carrot fly which is a real problem for those growing carrots in the ground. Carrot fly do not fly above 2 feet so if you can grow carrots in a tall pot or off the ground it could save your crop from being destroyed of small super sweet carrots.
3). Salad Leaves & Lettuce
There are hundreads of different types of lettuce that can be grown in pots and containers both indoors and outdoors. You can begin growing a range of different salad leaves in pots on the windowsill very early in the spring to get really early crops. You can also plant the same leaves throughout the summer and into the autumn outdoors.
If your new to growing vegetables in containers it’s best to buy a pack of seeds that has a mix of different lettuce and salad leaves included to give you a range of different leaves to try.
4). Peppers Can Be Grown Indoors Or Outdoors
Peppers can be grown in very much the same way as you would grow tomatoes in pots. Early in the season you will need to keeep your pepper plants indoors on the windowsill and away from frosts but later in the season when it warms up peppers can thrive outdoors too.
If your patient and have a little time to devote to growing vegetables in containers I would highly recommend growing a few peppers.
5). Potatoes Are Easy To Grow In Large Pots
First early potatoes love being grown in containers. You will need some outdoor space to grow potatoes though, even if it’s just a small patio or back yard.
You can begin planting potatoes as early as March and have crops in just 12 weeks.
6). Dwarf French Beans On The Patio
Did you know that you can actually grow a bumper crop of french beans in containers? Choose a variety with nice flowers and you will discover that dwarf french beans look incredible in a terracotta pot on the patio.
There are a few things that are important, first of all, beans are very hungry plans and need to be grown in a good compost. Secondly, slugs adore french beans and can destroy a container full of them overnight, so protect the beans the best you can whether that be using slug pellets, copper rings or slug traps. Finally, it’s important to harvest your beans regularly to avoid them getting stringy.
Running (tall) french beans can also be grown in a container, you just need a very large container and a wigwam structure for them to grow up.
7). Onions In Growbags
Spring onions can be grown in grow bags or containers designed for container vegetable gardening. Planting can begin any time in March and ends in July, I like to sow the seeds quite close and harvest the small spring onions once large enough the eat, the remaining spring onions I leave for around 12 weeks to mature.
Once planted spring onions just need to be watered and weeded. Spring onions rarely have any disease or pest problems.
8). Herbs Can Be Grown On The Windowsill
Although technically not container vegetable gardening, herbs are a quick, easy and ideal for growing in containers. Either indoors or outside, in big pots or small, there are herbs you can plant and harvest all year round.
Start with the five easiest to grow; mint, basil, thyme, sage and rosemary.