Maybe your yard does not offer enough room to plant everything you would like, or perhaps you are using containers to dress up your porch, patio, or deck. Either way, container gardening is a fun and an easy way to grow beautiful flowers and edible plants to enjoy.
The beauty of container gardening is that it gives you a lush garden look where you may not be able to plant directly in the ground. Sometimes the ground is just too hard or you may just want to use containers to dress up an area. They provide fresh herbs, veggies, and flowers right at your fingertips with less need for bending over, weeding, and other maintenance that ground gardening needs.
Container Gardening 101
If you are new to the wonderful world of container gardening I have gathered some tips, tricks, and ideas to make your container garden a success!
Container Garden Tips
To keep your containers light and easy to move around (not to mention saving money on potting soil) fill half the pot with chopped up pool noodles, crushed boxes, styrofoam, balled up newspaper, or something similar before adding the soil and plant. This also aids in drainage.
Make sure your containers have great drainage. A pot full of water can quickly grow mold on your plants. Avoid this by making sure the pots have holes and a layer of rock or other material that enables drainage.
Do not use garden soil in containers, rather you should opt for potting soil for best results (it is also much lighter).
Repot your plants as they outgrow their planters and switch out the soil every year if possible.
Fertilize your containers every month.
Place an uncooked unbroken egg in the bottom of your pot, as it breaks down it will provide fertilizer as it decomposes.
Hanging planters dry out much faster than ground plantings. Use a plastic liner and a soil mix that retains water to help keep the soil moist. You can also use clean diapers in the bottom of your pots and hanging baskets to help hold in moisture. Just open the diaper, lay with inside facing up, then add soil.
Hole punch and keep all your plant care tags on a keyring for quick and easy reference.
Container Gardening Ideas
You can use just about any type of planter that you wish to create a container garden. On a patio, you may want to use posts that enhance your patio decor. However, a mix of clay pots, plastic planters, and other empty containers will do the trick when you are more concerned with growing edibles instead of creating an attractive outdoor space.
Go for unusual containers like children's toys, trucks, wheelbarrows, etc. You can find more ideas in this post about upcycled planters for container gardening.
Create a vertical container garden by stacking planters, hanging baskets, and using window boxes to maximize your space.
What Plants Can You Grow in Containers?
Many vegetables thrive in a container. Some of the ones that fare the best are tomatoes, chili peppers, salad greens, radishes, carrots, potatoes, and onions. Get some more details on growing vegetables in containers here.
Herb gardens are perfect for planting in containers. Try them out in stacked pots or a strawberry pot to create height.
Succulents are perfect for containers, just make sure they have adequate drainage holes as they prefer drier soil.
What is your favorite container gardening tip?