Growing your own vegetables is a goal of many. Part of its appeal comes from knowing exactly what is in your food and ditching high grocery store prices. However, not everyone has a yard to plant in, and that’s where container gardening saves the day. Container gardening involves using a large container such as a barrel, large pot, or large window planter- to grow whatever produce or herbs you choose.
To get started, you will need to know a few things: what you want to plant, where to put your planter, how much sunlight your chosen location has, and the specific needs of each plant or seed. While this sounds like an overwhelming amount of information for a new gardener, fear not! We will lay out the basics below.
Basic Container Care
When selecting a container, be sure to use one that has adequate drainage at the bottom. This can be achieved by selecting a container with drainage holes or filling the bottom of a container without drain holes with about an inch of gravel. Drainage is important because it prevents the plants from rotting in water. Make the most of your container by planting like plants- in terms of sunlight and fertilizer needs- together.
Basic Plant Care
When planting, you can start from seeds or sprouted plants. Generally, re-potting sprouted plants will be easier for beginners. Plant these in either soilless mix, quick draining compost, or regular soil from a nursery or hardware store. Be sure to feed plants fertilizer about twice a month to encourage growth. Vegetables need about 6 to 8 hours of direct sunlight a day; and longer if using indirect light such as from a nearby window.
After considering containers and how to plant, you’re ready to select vegetables for your new indoor garden! Easy to grow, high-fiber vegetables such as carrots, radishes, potatoes, peas, and kale are excellent choices. Potatoes, radishes, and carrots are root vegetables, and you will need to monitor the above-ground portion to know when it’s time to harvest. Radishes can be ready in as little as one month, whereas carrots and potatoes need about 2 to 4 months.1
If you’re looking to get some fiber while you wait for your fiber-rich veggies to be ready, Fiber Choice® offers some excellent supplements you can find on Amazon.
1 Old Farmer’s Almanac. Container Gardening with Vegetables. Old Farmer’s Almanac. https://www.almanac.com/content/container-gardening-vegetables. Accessed June 22, 2020.
2 Rupp G, Simon S, Tara, et al. Top 30 high fiber vegetables you should eat lists. Leanjumpstart. https://leanjumpstart.com/high-fiber-vegetables/. Published June 19, 2020. Accessed June 22, 2020.