Posts Tagged ‘growing vegetables’

PostHeaderIcon 5 Tips on Growing Vegetables in Containers

Growing vegetables as a gardening hobby is fast gaining popularity around the world. People are more educated on the harmful effects of pesticides and are opting for organic vegetables instead. However, organic produce do not come cheap. Fortunately, there are other options such as growing your own vegetables.

It is a common misconception that you need to have a garden to enjoy vegetable gardening. This is not true as you can always do vertical gardening or container gardening if you are faced with space constraints. In this article, we will discuss about container gardening and how you can grow vegetables in containers, even if you only have a small balcony.

Container Vegetable Gardening Tips

1. Selecting a container

One of the main considerations in container vegetable gardening is to ask yourself – what type of vegetables do I want to plant? The type of containers or pots that you use for vegetable gardening is dependent on the type of vegetables that you intend to grow. Bigger plants require bigger, deeper pots to develop a strong and good root system.

Generally, larger containers are recommended for growing vegetables. It is not just the diameter of the container but the depth should be considered too. For vegetable plants to be robust and healthy, deep containers are needed as it provides the space for strong, good root system to develop. It doesn’t matter if the pots and containers are made of terra cotta or plastic. You can even use timber planters for growing vegetables. Just remember that size and depth are more important.

As a general guideline, a 3-5 gallon container will do well for growing vegetables such as cucumbers, peppers, tomatoes, spinach, zucchini, beans and lettuce. For the bigger plants, you will need to get 15 gallons containers.

2. Positioning your container

Growing vegetables indoors requires good amount of sunlight

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Growing vegetables indoors is unlike vegetable gardening in an outdoor area. While the plants may enjoy sunlight anywhere in an open space, container vegetable plants’ intake of sunlight is dependent on where you place the containers. Most vegetable plants require 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight daily, especially tomato, beans and peppers.

The location of your containers is crucial to the survival of your vegetable plants. Besides sunlight, you also have to consider if the location is windy. Whenever possible, you should avoid windy areas as strong winds tend to dry up the plants fast. If you cannot avoid the strong winds, you can construct some form of windbreaker around your vegetable plants to shield them.

When positioning your container vegetable plants, ensure that you allocate sufficient room between the containers. This is to facilitate air circulation, which has a direct effect on the health of your plants. In addition, position your containers such that the taller plants do not shade out the shorter ones. This ensures all plants are exposed to a good amount of sunlight.

3. Selecting soil
Garden soil or heavy potting soil is not suitable for growing vegetables in containers. It is advisable to use container mix that can retain moisture better and resist compaction. You may consider making your own compost with manure added. This is probably a better option than buying readily available garden soil from the nursery.

Other pointers to note concerning soil for container vegetable gardening are the vegetable types. For instance, potatoes prefer rich, loamy soil while carrots prefer more free-draining compost that is sandier.

4. Watering

Water your plants frequently to ensure they don't dry up

Image: Simon Howden / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Container plants tend to drink up quite a fair bit of water. Therefore, it is vital that you water your container vegetable plants often to ensure they don’t dry up. Positioning your containers near to water points will make it easier for you to access water for frequent watering.

How do you know if your plant has sufficient water? First, you have to determine if the soil is moist or soaking wet. It should not be soaking wet as that can cause the roots to rot. The finger test is often used to test the moisture level of the soil. Insert your index finger into the soil. If it feels hard and dry, it’s time to water your plants. If the surface, or just below the surface of the soil feels moist, you can hold back watering till the next day.

An alternative test of soil moisture is to use the Soil Moisture Meter. This is a more accurate way to measure moisture level than the finger test.

5. Fertilizers
Container plants – vegetables and non-vegetables alike, require watering more often as they absorb quite a bit of water. Frequent watering tends to dilute the fertilizer faster; hence it is important that you feed your container vegetable plants fertilizers twice as often to ensure sufficient nutrients for your plants.

Growing vegetables in containers is easy with the availability of self watering planters. You need not worry about over or under watering your plants. With containers, you can easily move your plants around to get maximum sunlight. Container vegetable gardening can be such a joy when you are equipped with the right tools and gardening tips.

PostHeaderIcon Why Grow Vegetables When You Can Buy Them Easily?

How do I grow organic vegetables?

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Grow vegetables, buy vegetables – which is a better option? In our modern, fast-paced society where speed is the essence, most people would opt for buying vegetables. Pushing your shopping cart down the supermarket aisles while enjoying the cool air-con after work is probably a relaxing task that you enjoy too. Besides the convenience, the readily available and wide variety of vegetables also makes groceries shopping an easy task.

So, why grow vegetables when you can get them easily from the supermarkets?

Growing your own vegetables has several advantages. Just as home-cooked meals are healthier and better than  food consumed outside, growing your own vegetables allows you to control what goes into the soil and the plants. Although growing your own vegetables may sound tough to the clueless, it can actually be interesting if you adopt a fun attitude and rope in your family members too.

Still not convinced about putting your hands into vegetable gardening? Here are 5 good reasons to encourage you to grow your own vegetable garden.

1. Enjoy fresh veggies anytime you want it

Imagine harvesting your own vegetables from your garden a minute ago and enjoying a bowl of delicious salad the next minute. Having your own DIY vegetable garden allows you to savor your favorite vegetables anytime you want it, even in the middle of the night.

2. Organic vegetables free from pesticides

Being the gardener, you decide how you want your veggies to be grown. You can learn more about organic gardening and grow fresh vegetables that are free from pesticides and chemicals. You can even make your own fertilizers and do your part to save the earth.

3. Strengthen family bonds 

Gardening is a wonderful activity that can strengthen family bonds if you get your family members involved as well. And if you choose to plant vegetables, you can literally enjoy the fruits of your labor. Do you have young children at home? Get them involved too. What better way to teach our next generation about nature, recycling and saving the earth than to have them cultivate interest in this area at a young age!

4. Relaxation and Natural Therapy

Vegetable gardening, in fact, any forms of gardening is a good form of relaxation for our busy minds. Besides taking nature walks, you can also try gardening, which many have said to be therapeutic and helps to de-stress.

5. Save more money

Yes, growing your own vegetables can help you to save money. It doesn’t cost much to get seedlings,  gardening tools or flower pots and containers. All it takes is your dedication and passion for your labor to turn into a bountiful harvest.

Vegetable gardening is not just for those who have a garden or backyard. If you stay in an apartment, you can consider indoor vegetable gardening. And if you want to maximize your gardening space, get the Gardman R687 4-Tier Mini Greenhouse, where you can have 4 sturdy shelves to plant your favorite vegetables at your balcony.

 

PostHeaderIcon How to Grow Vegetables in Containers

Have you ever walked past some houses in your neighborhood and envy the beautiful vegetable gardens within? Growing vegetables is fairly easy and can be done even if you are an apartment dweller. Container gardening makes it possible for many vegetables to be grown in an indoor garden. Some of the vegetables that can be grown in containers include tomatoes, onions, eggplant, cucumber and green beans.

Before you embark on your indoor container gardening project, you have to consider a few points:

  • Which type of vegetables do you want to grow?
  • What kind of containers should you use?
  • Where should you position your containers?
  • How often should you water your container plants?

If you are new to container vegetable gardening, this article will provide you with some insight on how to go about it. Click HERE to get more information about growing vegetables in containers.

PostHeaderIcon What Type of Soil Should I Use for Growing Onions in Containers?

Generally, onions are relatively easy to grow as long as you have the right amount of sunlight, water and a good soil mix. You may be wondering, what constitutes a good soil mix? For onions to grow well, it is best to have soil that has a pH value of 6.0 to 7.5.  Anything higher or lower will result in the onion bulbs not maturing and your efforts will be futile.

If growing onions is your next container vegetable gardening project, then you’ve got to read this article to get more tips to growing onions successfully. Simply click on the link below to read the full article.

Read the full article here:  What Type of Soil Should I Use for Growing Onions in Containers?

PostHeaderIcon Why You Should Plant Heirloom Seeds

Do you know why “heirloom seeds” are more superior? The term “heirloom” implies that something has been saved for many years and passed down through the generations unchanged. This is what makes a seed an heirloom; it has remained unhybridized for many (possibly hundreds) of years. Heirloom seeds are the only type of seed that you can keep for re-planting the following year. This allows you to plant a garden year after year with little to no expenditure. There is no need to ever spend money on seeds again. If you were to save hybrid seeds, they may be affected with a Terminator gene, causing them to be sterile.

Heirloom fruits and vegetables have better nutritional integrity. Most of the vegetables and fruits that we see in the grocery stores maybe grown from hybrid seeds or are GMO foods and lack the nutrients that we need. This is because fruits and vegetables are often bred to have qualities that are desirable to marketers, but compromise their nutritional content.

To continue reading this article, click on the link below:
Why You Should Plant Heirloom Seeds