Over the past four years of talking to the members of the A Fresh Legacy community I have heard the same three common issues arise when people tell me that they want to grow vegetables at home BUT…….These three issues act as a barrier for busy mums to start growing their own vegetable garden.
- Lack of a suitable garden area to use for growing
- Lack of time
- Lack of knowledge – not knowing what to plant, how to plant or when to plant
This post will outline some solutions to the number one issue of lack of a suitable growing space to plant your vegetables
There are numerous reasons that this may be an issue and may include:
- Home is a rental property and it is not easy to make changes to the garden area
- Home is an apartment or a house with a small garden area, or no garden area
- The garden layout exists with no additional areas available to add in vegetable garden beds
A dedicated garden area is not required to grow vegetables. I can tell you that this is a want, NOT a need.
Many vegetables and most herbs can be grown in pots or containers. A garden area is not a necessity. Plants can be grown in almost any material that will hold dirt and allow for drainage. Be creative, look out around your home for things that you could use and also at local recycle stores and opportunity shops.
Here are a few ideas to get you started. Really once you think about it the options to reuse, recycle or re-purpose objects is endless.
I have plants growing in:
- Old tin mop buckets
- An old tractor tyre
- Terracotta and numerous other pots, including many that I reuse from nursery purchases
- An old washing tub/boiler
- Concrete tubs a friend was throwing away
- Grape dip tins
- A wheelbarrow
- A sewerage container – true
My mum loves reusing her olive oil tins for herbs. She also has a gorgeous old horse feed concrete tub and a half wine barrel that she plants herbs in. You can take a look around her colorful garden here.
Still need more ideas?
Consider piling up bricks to make a border, or use hay bales once they have been watered down and begin to decompose.
Be creative, plant and use materials that reflect the style of your home and lifestyle.
Some things to keep in mind when planting in containers:
- The soil will dry out quicker in pots and will require more frequent watering especially in hot months of the year.
- Soil quality is important and should be topped up and at least partially replaced every 6 months
- Plants in pots require fertilising
- Pots must allow enough growing space for the plant to flourish and produce vegetables
Growing vegetables or herbs in containers IS suited to:
- root crops that require a loose soil – such as carrots and beetroot
- spreading herbs such as oregano and mint. The pot assist to prevent the spread
- plants that have very specific soil requirements as the contained space allows for greater control
Growing vegetables and herbs in containers is NOT suited to:
- plants that rely on spacing for pollination – such as corn
- those that grow to a large size – such as artichokes and zucchini
- heavy feeders
- climbers – such as peas
- bushy and difficult to contain
- a “plant and forget” approach. They require care and monitoring
Have you planted vegetables or herbs in a unique container? What was it?
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