Getting Started with Apartment Gardening

You can grow plants in your apartment even if it is small. Apartment gardens can be a great place to grow herbs, vegetables, and fruits. As you develop your gardening skills, start with a few small containers. Consider factors such as the amount of sunlight available and how heavy your containers are. How to get your apartment garden started right.

How to start a container garden
How to Grow Plants In Apartments
All plants must meet specific growing requirements. Consider these factors when choosing plants for your apartment garden.

Sunlight
The majority of fruiting and floral plants require a full sunday. This means that you need six to eight direct hours of sun per day. This can be hard to come by in an apartment–especially in a city where tall buildings can block the sun for at least part of the day. The best places to get full sun are balconies and roofs. You can choose plants which require less sun, like certain herbs and salad greens, or add a grow-light to simulate the sun’s rays.

Soil
The soil is the source of water, oxygen and nutrients for plants. You can’t use garden soil in containers because it will compact and prevent water flow. A potting mix that drains well is needed. The potting mix is fluffy and light, allowing oxygen and water to circulate efficiently. This helps keep the roots healthy. It’s also sterile so you don’t need to worry about pests or diseases entering your apartment.

Water
Container plants need to be watered frequently, sometimes multiple times per day. Choose a location for your container gardens that is close to water. Watering cans are heavy, especially when you have multiple containers to water. Consider purchasing a hose which can be connected to a faucet. When you need it, it’s right there. And when you’re not using it, it can be rolled up.

Humidity
You may need to add some humidity if you’re growing plants indoors on a windowsill. This is especially true when the heating system is running. You can spray the plants with fine mist or place them on a tray filled with water.

Wind
Containers may need to be protected if your plants are going to be exposed in high winds. This is especially true if they will be on a roof or balcony. Wind can tear leaves and top-heavy containers overturn. Provide a windblock, like a screen or railing. Make sure that your containers are large and heavy enough to hold the plants.

Weight
The weight of containers full of soil can easily triple once they have been saturated with water. Ensure that the location of your apartment garden can support the weight. Window boxes must be attached to the window sill. If you are gardening on your balcony or roof, ask about any weight restrictions.

Scallions growing on a sunny window sill

The Best Plants to Choose for Apartments
To a certain degree, you can grow any plant in a pot. You might not be able to grow a full-size tree, but you can find thin columnar varieties of apple trees that will fit into a small corner on your balcony. Choose a few plants that you like to eat and experiment with them. Start with seeds. They are more diverse and cheaper. Small nursery plants will help you establish your garden faster.

Herbs: While many herbs will grow in containers well, they will not grow as large or bushy as they might outdoors on the ground. You may need to replace the plants if they are harvested frequently. It is great to have fresh herbs nearby for cooking. Mint, chives and basil are all good choices for apartment gardening.
Salad greens are shallow-rooted, fast-growing plants. If they get enough water, they don’t care too much about the growing conditions.
Tomatoes:Tomatoes can grow large and heavy but do well in pots. The best container for them is one with a minimum of 14 inches diameter, but larger containers are better. The patio varieties can be grown in a hanging pot. Choose a determinate or dwarf tomato variety.
Chili peppers are great for those who like heat. They can be grown in containers and produce fruit all year round. Sweet peppers can be grown in containers as well, but usually they don’t perform as well as hot ones.
Meyer lemons are among the easiest fruits to cultivate in a pot. Meyer lemons grow well in a container if you give them six to eight hours of sunlight each day and some humidity. Lemon trees emit a sticky sap, so you’ll want to put something under the pot in order to protect your furniture and floors.
Strawberry window boxes are as delicious as they are beautiful. For the best strawberries, strawberry plants need at least 6 hours of sunlight per day. The soil should be consistently moist but not soggy.
Best Gardening Subscription Boxes
The beginnings of a apartment garden

Apartment Garden Care
You can expect to perform certain tasks in your apartment’s garden on a regular basis, such as:

Watering is the single most important task in gardening. Even if you garden is in the rain, it probably won’t provide enough water. Container soil dries quickly, particularly as the plant grows. You can test the soil by sticking your finger a few inches below the surface. You need to water if it feels dry.
Feeding: Your plants will require regular feeding according to their specific needs. The easiest way to do this is by adding a water-soluble fertiliser when you water. If your potting soil contains fertilizer, this will help you delay feeding your plants.
Problems: Insects are not naturally predatory and pests can find plants anywhere. When you water your plants or harvest them, inspect for any problems. You should move the plant if you see signs of disease or pests, like discoloration or holes on the leaves.
Harvesting: Know when the plants you are growing are ready to be harvested. Don’t wait. Harvesting can actually encourage the plant to produce more food.
Watering the apartment garden

There isn’t always a lot of space in apartments to garden. There’s always a sunny spot where you can enjoy your efforts and test your green fingers.


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