Tending To My Patch: Growing Vegetables In Containers

The simplest answer is; virtually any type of vegetable or herb should fair well in a container as long as it has enough room, proper drainage and nutrients. There are also ‘mini’ varieties of vegetables that have been specifically bred to do well in small spaces and look attractive.
They need a sunny space. An advantage with vegetables grown in containers is that you can move the containers around to follow the sun and seasons if necessary. Growing vegetables in containers allows easy access for the following reasons: easy access to the kitchen; handy or safer environments, especially for children; better protection from unwanted attention of various pests; easy for the less mobile and the handicapped.
An outdoor potted vegetable garden is usually extremely attractive and serves the dual purpose of style and function around your patio.
The following list of basic tips applies to most vegetables, and will help you and your plants get off to a good start. Sun – most vegetables need full sun – that means at least six hours of direct sunlight a day. Water – growing vegetables need water – lots of it. Proper watering may be the single most important and hardest part of vegetable container gardening. Heat – if the container will be placed in a really hot zone you may have to shade your plants in the middle of the day in order not to fry them. Always make sure to harden off your plants before you put them outside. Growing Median/Soil – quality potting soil is really important for vegetables. Fertilizer – plants need food to thrive, and their food is fertilizer. If your soil doesn’t have fertilizer already mixed in, you’ll want to add fertilizer. Drainage – drainage is key to keep plants from drowning. You want your pot or container to let excess water out of the bottom, so your plants won’t sit in water or soggy soil. Containers – choosing a container can be daunting. You can use almost anything for a garden planter as long as it is big enough and has good drainage. Keep in mind though, that the larger your container, the easier it will be to maintain. The more soil a container can hold the more moisture it will retain. Bigger, really is better here. Seeds or Seedlings – you can start your veggies from seed or buy seedlings. There are some significant advantages and disadvantages to each. Starting your own seeds is much less expensive than buying seedlings, after some startup costs. If you start your own seeds you can grow hard to find varieties and can also grow your seedlings organically.