Growing Anywhere With Vegetable Planter Boxes
Lack of space is no longer a limitation for gardeners who love to grow their own vegetables and fruit. You don't need a plot of land to grow fresh vegetables. Just selecting the right vegetable will make growing easier. However more and more nurseries are coming up with dwarf varieties of fruit and vegetables which can be adapted to indoor planting in small containers. Be on the look out for key words like bush, compact, and space saver on the label. Vegetables such as tomatoes and peppers, carrots and radishes are perfect for container vegetable gardens as they take up little space. Don’t stop at planting just vegetables and herbs. Dwarf varieties of fruit grow well too. Blueberries, strawberries and dwarf varieties of apples, peaches and plum grow well in planter boxes.
How to Grow in a Vegetable Planter Box
First of all, you need to plan your garden. Select the plants you would like to grow and find a suitable location in the home where there is adequate sunlight. Root crops and leaf crops can tolerate partial shade, but vegetables grown for their fruits generally need at least five hours of full, direct sunlight each day and perform best with 8 to 10 hours. Lack of sunlight will prevent the plant from growing, flowering and producing fruit.
Selecting the right Container
There are many possible containers for indoor gardening. The ideal planter should have thick walls that will slow moisture loss and insulate the plant roots. Clay, wood, plastic, and metal are some of the suitable materials. Barrels, baskets, cut off milk bottles all make good containers as long as they are sterilized well and free from pests.
Containers for these plants must be big enough to support plants when they are fully grown, have adequate drainage and be able to hold soil without spilling.
The Right Soil
While you can use soil in your container vegetable garden, potting mixes are much better. Don’t use soil from your garden as they contain too much clay. Peat-based mixes, containing peat and vermiculite, are excellent as they also allow the plants to get enough air and water due to the balance of their pH content
Watering your Plant
Watering container plants need a little more care. Pots and containers always require more frequent watering than plants in the ground because the volumes of soil are relatively small allowing the containers to dry out very quickly. As the season progresses and your plants mature, their root system will expand and require even more water. Check your soil daily for moisture and water accordingly. On the same note, the roots should not be soaking in water which will cause them to rot.
Fertilizing Your Plants
Plants need additional nutrients as they grow. Feeding them with a water soluble fertilizer at the recommended rate of the manufacturer is important to ensure proper growth of the plants. Repeat every two to three weeks. An occasional dose of fish emulsion or compost will add trace elements to the soil.
Plants grown in containers are prone to the same pests and diseases as those grown outside in the garden. It is important that you check your plants regularly so that you can treat them as soon as you spot them to nip them in the bud. Remember to give them the same tender loving care that you will give the plants in your garden.
Only your imagination and space can limit what you can plant indoors. Try different plants at different times of the year and you will have an edible harvest all year around.