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Growing Vegetables in Containers

By: Jack Claridge - Updated: 14 Dec 2013 | comments*Discuss
Home Gardening Garden Containers Growing

There are a great many of us who would like to produce our own vegetables for use in our own cooking at home but simply do not have the space to do so. This is something that puts many people off growing vegetables and they often find that they spend more money than they need to buying vegetables from their local supermarket which may not have been grown with the same care and attention as can be afforded to the home grown variety. But there is a solution to the problem.

Growing Vegetables in Containers

Contrary to what a lot of people think it is possible to grow vegetables in containers either in a corner of your garden, a corner of your patio if you have on, or on a window sill should you live in a flat.

What Kind of Vegetables Can I Grow?

You can grow a variety of vegetables as many of them have what are referred to as ‘mini varieties’ which have been grown specifically in small places. Such vegetables include :

  • Runner Beans
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Asparagus
  • Celery
  • Artichokes
  • Spinach
  • Chard

These are just a few examples of the many different types of vegetable you can grow and your local nursery or garden centre should be able to provide you with an even longer list.

What Kind of Container Can I Use?

Again this is very much dependent on the amount of space you have to utilise. If you have only a window sill for example then a plastic window box (or wooden one) can be used: this will allow you to utilise the entire length of the window sill without infringing on your ability to open the windows.

Here are a few examples of what you can use:

Kitchen Colander

We have at one time or another had a kitchen colander that we have used for straining our vegetables and potatoes et al and have probably replaced it because it has no longer been fit for purpose. Well just because it is no longer fit for the purposes of straining vegetables indoors it does not mean it cannot be used as a means to grow them outdoors. Colanders provide a good amount of space to begin growing your vegetables (or indeed herbs) and also their holes are excellent for the purposes of drainage.

Terracotta Pots

Terracotta pots work on two levels: they are good for planting miniature vegetables or herbs in and also they provide a pleasing aesthetic to whatever space you have available to use. Terracotta pots are not, contrary to popular believe, particularly expensive so purchasing two or three may be a worth while investment for your small kitchen garden.

Household Containers

In this age of recycling it is worth looking at your household waste before you recycle it to see if there is anything that may well be useful to grow miniature vegetables and herbs in. Receptacles that make good growing containers include:

  • Paint Pots
  • Cooking Oil Drums (Catering size)
  • Old Wastepaper Bins
  • Plastic Jars
  • Glass Jars

All of these are items that at some point in time you will no longer have use for so it is worth while to look at them in a different light and perhaps use them to help further your vegetable growing needs. You should also ensure that any pots or cans you use which may have contained products containing chemical residues are thoroughly washed and rinsed before potting.

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I am trying (new this year) to grow a few herbs on my kitchen counter. I found a small grow light that fits under the upper cabinets in the kitchen. It is like the under cabinet lights you can put up for task lighting only it is a grow light.So far it is working fine. I don't leave it on all the time, but I think if I just have it on during the day it should be OK. So Far, So Good..... I think you could grow just about anything this way. good luck!
POKY - 14-Dec-13 @ 7:29 PM
A much better way to fluid seed sowing is to use Ager jelly which is obtained from health food shops or cookery shops. First chit your seed on damp tissue paper in the usual way and add it together with some radish seed ( as a row marker ) to a solution of thin Ager jelly. Make it thin but just thick enough to suspend the seed without it sinking. The viscosity can be adjusted by reboiling the solution and adding more water. ( As many times as you like.) Note the amount of water used for next time. Unlike wall paper paste Ager jelly contains no fungicides etc and is sterilised by the boiling water. Simply put the solution containing the chitted seed into a plastic bag with the corner cut off and squeeze out into your furrowed soil. The resulting jelly is glass clear and you can clearly see the seed as it is sown and can therefore adjust the spacing to perfection. I do this with Parsnips with near 100% results. Good Luck.
BIG PETE - 7-Nov-13 @ 2:57 PM
This is what I needed as I do not have a garden ,I am trying to grow everything in pots but my house faces north and is in shade for most of the day any ideas?
innit - 5-Apr-11 @ 1:09 PM
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