Nothing beats the fresh wholesome taste of vegetables freshly picked from your own garden. Planting vegetable gardens can be a challenge if you don’t have a backyard, but you can still grow vegetables indoors. Just follow a few simple garden-smart guidelines.
Pick Suitable Plants
Since you will be limited by the amount of space and sunlight you have indoors, you will have to pick your plants wisely. You probably won’t be able to grow fruit bearing plants since they require a lot of sunshine. But, vegetables like spinach, miniature cabbages, lettuce, and swiss chard don’t require as much sunshine and so do quite will indoors.
You will have to make sure the pots you use are big enough for the plants full growth. There are small root plants like onions and radishes and even small root carrots all of which are great choices. Herbs are especially well suited for the indoor garden since they tend to be compact and don’t need very much space. You can also grow miniature types of peppers, eggplant, and tomatoes.
Find the Perfect Spot for Growing
A bright south-facing window is best for your garden. Plants need as much sunlight as they can get. As long as the place you choose gets at least five hours of sunlight a day it should be ok. If you can’t find such a spot, you can always buy lightbulbs that can simulate natural sunlight.
Don’t forget about traffic flow. Plants bruise easily so you will need to choose a spot where the plants will have little chance of human contact. If there are pets or small children in your house you will need to place the plants out of their reach. You will also want to keep your gardening tools in easy reach as well as something to clean up the occasional mess. Plants do grow in dirt after all.
Enhance Your Gardens Microclimate
Plants need high humidity and moderate temperatures to grow well. Indoor gardens usually don’t have enough humidity. To fix this place a pan of gravel beneath your container to catch the excess water run off. As the water evaporates, it will increase the humidity near the plants.
Another great way optimize your microclimate is to group plants together. You can mix your vegetables with more decorative houseplants to create groupings that are not only beautiful but also functional. Temperature is actually easier to control inside the house, as it is easy to provide more shade by simply drawing the curtains. Just make sure plants are protected from drafts.
Get Good Potting Soil
Your indoor vegetable garden needs potting soil which drains well and has the nutrients your plants need to grow and remain healthy. At your local garden center, you can buy premixed potting soil which already has the correct amount of fertilizer. You can also buy organic potting soil if you prefer. It is easy to cause fertilizer buildup in containers so use caution when adding nutrients.
It is very rewarding to grow your own vegetables indoors, so be sure to give it a try. You can even grow enough to give away as presents to family and friends.