The idea of container gardening for vegetables can be exciting for many gardeners. Because it does not require the same kind of care as traditional outdoor vegetable gardening, container gardening can be a great option for those who want to grow their own vegetables but do not have the time or money to do so. Container gardening can also be beneficial for those who are new to gardening, as well. Here are some tips for how to do container gardening for vegetables.
Working Regularly on Plants
First, know that container gardening usually takes regular, routine work, such as planting, harvesting, and weeding. It also requires an area, or “soil,” with which to grow plants. The soil should be rich in nutrients for healthy, green vegetables. Additionally, most vegetables need at least six hours of sunlight each day, which is why many people choose containers. If you are not accustomed to gardening, or do not have much time, container gardening can be a great option for you. Just be sure that you have plenty of sun to provide your plants with the proper amount of light, especially if your chosen vegetable seeds require an extra amount of sunlight.
Selection of Seeds to Plant
When selecting which seeds to plant, consider where they will be planted. If you live in an area that does not get a lot of sunshine, then consider an organic variety, which will do fine in most areas. On the other hand, there are many varieties of seeds that can be sown in soil that is already rich in nutrients. You may choose to purchase seeds from a local nursery to ensure that you are getting what you need. Pesticides are an option if you choose to use them; however, keep in mind that pesticides can damage your plants and harm the soil, so be sure that you are following all of the proper safety precautions before applying any.
Provide Well-drained Soil Surface to Plants
One of the most important things to remember about planting seeds in a container is that they should be planted in an area that has a well-drained soil surface. For container vegetable gardens, this means an area that has a firm but permeable soil surface. Some gardeners like to position their seeds in areas that receive a lot of sun, while others like to place their crops near shade-tolerant trees. This is simply a matter of personal preference and planting location, as both will work just fine. Remember to avoid planting on sloping ground, as this will cause your plants to become over-saturated and cause the roots to wilt.
Planting Vegetables in Containers
Planting vegetables in containers is similar to planting anything else in the garden, except that you will not be using soil. Instead, you will be using potting soil, which is compost that is specially designed to grow certain types of plants, like wheat, in the container. Most experts agree that there are no special nutrients in the compost that will allow you to grow vegetables in a container. However, some people swear by adding small amounts of seaweed, black walnut hulls or other additives, which can be found at any gardening store or from a friend who grows herbs.
Requirements For Growing Vegetables in Containers
Container gardening for vegetables will also require you to care for the soil and the plants as needed. The problem that most people run into is that they wait to water and fertilize their herbs until the plants are almost bare. This is actually counterproductive. You should always water your herbs before they begin to bloom, because watering them when they are in the final stages of growth will cause them to wilt. Fertilizing your herbs also causes weeds to grow faster and healthier, so wait until your herb garden is nearly finished before you fertilize it.
Switching to Terra cotta Pots
If you have successfully grown food in clay pots, you may wish to switch to using a Terra cotta pot or one of the many other types of containers out there. Both of these types of pots retain heat well, meaning that you can plant them in areas that would not support growing food in the ground. They will also retain water well, so you won’t have to worry about mowing the grass after they have finished growing. Terra cotta pots, unlike clay pots, do not crack or break down after being filled with water.
Providing Basis Nutrition to Plants
In order to make sure that your plants have everything they need to grow, you should provide them with the basic nutrition that they need. Since you will be putting food directly in the soil, you will need to give your plants plenty of iron, zinc and other trace minerals. These nutrients are found in various kinds of leafy green vegetables. Some varieties, such as spinach and kale, actually taste better if you grind them up to use in sauces. If you do not have any green vegetables lying around, you can purchase dry packets of these nutrients at any grocery or natural foods store. As an added bonus, your veggies will look brighter and healthier, so eating them is a great way to improve your diet.