Container gardening is ideal for growing a wide range of plants, be it herbs, veggies, or even flowers. Most plants thrive well in containers so long as they are well-taken care of. Gardening can be rewarding, even for those with smaller spaces.
Below are seven tips to get you started with container gardening.
Plan before planting
Plants thrive in unique conditions. Some plants may need high-intensity sunlight while others flourish in low lit areas. Shorter plants should be at the front while taller plants should be placed at the back if using a large pot; therefore, plan how they will be placed in the container. Taller plants should be placed in the center and sprawling flowers at the edge of your container. Plants that require the same conditions to grow should be put together.
Choose the best potting mix
When using containers, it’s wise to choose a soil that is absorbent found in most garden centers. Soil from the garden is often considered too heavy because of high clay content. Clay retains moisture, which can drown the roots of any plant.
Disinfect your containers before using them
Make sure your container is clean before planting anything, whether the container is new or reused. More so, when reusing a container, make sure it’s disinfected. Reused containers may have had infected plants. You can use a multi-purpose cleaner that is eco-friendly to wash your container and dry it effectively before putting your plant.
Plants should be watered daily; thus, invest in containers that are self-watering because of having a water reservoir will ensure your plants don’t dry out. Watering is essential, particularly during dry weather. The best way to make sure you’ve appropriately watered is to make sure water is coming out of the drainage holes. Also, never over water your plants till your soil becomes mushy.
Fertilize your soil
For your flowers to flourish, your soil has to have enough nutrients, fertilizing is the key. Using a natural method like manure tea is an excellent option for your vegetables as it contains no chemicals. Manure tea is obtained from manure with nutrients that are soluble. It increases your soil’s organic matter, hence helping your soil to keep nutrients and also improve drainage.
Properly select your containers
Gardening containers should be chosen depending on your gardening needs. For instance, using a large container is encouraged because it holds soil moisture longer, but it also depends on the space. Also, the material you opt for your container matters. When using a glazed ceramic container, holes for drainage should be drilled at the base. Plastic materials are great because of their lightness, but they may not last long, especially when exposed to the sun. Terra-cotta containers require consistent watering but are strong enough.
Practice crop rotation
Since different plants have different nutritional needs, planting them in the same container has the same value as practicing rotational farming. It is ideal since it maintains the soil nutrients. You should be careful not to compromise their growing space. Planting crops that can often be picked will help create more space.