By Danielle Wirick, MS, CSCS, FMSC
We all know that you can plant the usual tomato or pepper plant in a pot and get it to grow. But don’t be limited in your container gardens. Below are just a few tips and ideas to get your creative juices flowing so you can produce a tasty, creative garden this summer.
Don’t just think pots. Think grow bags, window boxes, railing containers, pallets, rolling carts, pots with wheels, elevated beds, and hanging planters. Different types of containers will give you the opportunity to have garden “space” when actual land is at a premium.
Don’t limit your garden produce. Herbs, tomatoes, and peppers are great. But don’t forget about potatoes, garlic, onions, all types of lettuce, beans, carrots, lemons, strawberries, and even corn. If it’s a large plant, use a large container or look for varieties that are specifically suited to container gardens.
Think ornamental. Your garden can be beautiful, so use it to your advantage and plant ornamental vegetables among your flowers. Try Cimarron or freckles lettuce (similar to romaine), rainbow chard, red cabbage, purple broccoli, orange or purple cauliflower, and herbs like lavender and dill.
Not sure what you want in your garden? Predesigned kits like “Salad bar” or “Salsa” can be found locally at Home Depot and Lowes. Additional varieties can be found online at www.gardeners.com or www.burpee.com.
Don’t have time to care for your container garden daily? Look for plants that are disease and drought resistant and use self-watering containers. Find all of them at local garden stores or online.
When it’s time to harvest whatever you have planted, you’ll be amazed at how easy it was to grow your own even with limited space. Now get some containers and some plants, and start growing.
How to make Container Gardens