Nothing is better than growing your own vegetables or herbs from seeds or young transplants, watching them grow everyday and waiting to harvest. It is a real treat to go out each day and pick fresh lettuce for a salad or potatoes, baked or roasted, you decide. And if you’re thinking, “I don’t have a garden or yard to plant a bountiful veggie or herb garden” then I am here to let you know “you can”, by planting a container garden. Whether you have an apartment, condo, small yard or just want to have some incredible containers on your patio, you can plant many types of vegetables and/or herbs in containers. I (Theresa) have tried alot of different vegetables in containers, such as tomatoes, peppers, cucs, green onions and kohlrabi. I have harvested a bountiful crop from them all. For the first time last year I tried carrots and lettuce, which grew very well. Some great herbs to seed or transplant are basil, parsley, dill, sorrel, thyme, etc. Even if you have ground for growing, containers can help you overcome problems like poorly drained soil, pests and soil-borne diseases. Another great thing about growing in pots is that the soil warms faster so you can sow your seeds earlier and get a head start on your vegetables/herbs. Also with pots being higher, it’s like working in a raised garden bed.
Lets get you started……all you need is a generous size container, good potting soil, bone meal and a suitable spot — that gets at least 5 to 6 hours of full sun a day. Fill your containers about 2 to 4 inches from the top of your pot, mix 2 tablespoons of bonemeal per gallon of soil. Bonemeal helps with the development of roots and also helps to prevent blossom end rot on tomatoes, peppers, cucs etc. If you want you can add some Vermicompost (also know as worm casting) with your potting soil. I dampen my soil first then I begin my planting or sowing the seeds. Set your transplants the same level they were growing in their pot except for tomatoes, take some lower leaves off and plant deeper into container. Always make sure you water well after planting. Sow your seeds in the container by following the directions on the package, every variety has different directions. All this info applies to herb gardening as well, whether it’s seeds or transplants.
Watering is the most important thing to watch for in your container garden. Inspect your containers regularly, don’t allow your potting soil to dry out. For best result, keep soil at an even moderate moister. You may have to water every second day depending on the weather and plants that are in the containers.
You can start fertilizing your transplanted vegetables or herbs about one to two weeks after planting. For seedlings, it is best to wait for the first set of true leaves to develop and start with a seedling starter fertilizer. Follow the mixing directions on your organic or water soluble fertilizer. Once your seedling have their 4th to 6th true leaves you can change your fertilizer to an All Purpose or Vegetable fertilizer.
These are the few easy steps and you got yourselves a container garden.
Happy planting to you all and enjoy an awesome gardening season.