Square Foot Container Vegetable Gardening: Just Put One Foot In Front Of The Other

With backyard space at a premium for many of you, square foot container vegetable gardening may be just the ticket. It’s actually quite amazing just how much produce you can produce from what seems like a very tiny area of soil. Yet, it’s the most efficient way of achieving the highest yields out of a limited space. This article about a family’s experiences with square foot gardening illustrates the many edible and inedible benefits they were able to achieve with their efforts. This article written by Krys Stefansky for HamptonRoads.com is both instructive and enlightening.

Square Foot Container Vegetable Gardening: Just Put One Foot In Front Of The Other

If Will and Katie Wyndham want additional privacy in the backyard, they can take seats behind their tomatoes.

square foot container vegetable gardening

Square foot container vegetable gardening provides the most produce for the least amount of garden space. Photo by Bonnie Ingersoll c/o Photos.Com.

The four plants Will put in this spring have grown to a hedge-like 10 feet high, lush with branches, leaves and fruit.

“I’ve never seen tomatoes this tall,” Will Wyndham said, still amazed at his success.

Nor has the Norfolk man seen strawberries with a yield as high, nor scarlet runner beans as prolific.

His secret? Following the instructions for an organic technique known as square-foot gardening in a book his wife spotted at the hardware store.

It’s Wyndham’s second summer as a square-foot gardener – and he’s a believer.

He started with a compost tumbler from Costco Wholesale.

“We put in eggshells, stuff from the kitchen: coffee grounds, tea, all that good stuff. I turn it about once a week. Then I follow the soil recipe in the book and mix the compost with peat and vermiculite,” Wyndham said.

He shoveled the soil into raised beds he constructed, also according to the instructions in the book, at his home off Azalea Garden Road. The method relies on 4-by-4-foot raised beds that Wyndham crafted of 8-inch-wide cedar boards. For the tomatoes’ extensive root system, he added a second tier to one bin to create a 16-inch-high soil bed.

The three raised beds are laid out in an L-shape in the center of his backyard in the middle of his lawn, just to the right of his daughter’s playhouse, out of the way of the grass that Brandy, the chocolate Lab, uses to stretch her legs. The vegetables receive optimum sunlight, about 8 to 10 hours each day.

Original article here at hamptonroads.com:

It’s truly amazing how much you can grow in a small area by practicing square foot container vegetable gardening techniques. Why not give it a go in a small section of your garden or even your patio? Try it and see how it works for you. You just might be surprised.

Please leave a comment below and if you’ve tried these techniques, share your experiences and anything you have learned along the way.

A world without tomatoes is like a string quartet without violins.  — Laurie Colwin

Best Tip To Grow Vegetables In Containers: Throw In The Kitchen Sink

When it comes time for you to grow vegetables in containers, gardener and author Michael Kelly has some advice for us all: Throw in the kitchen sink. That’s right. Sounds strange at first, but he’s talking about using unconventional yet still everyday items that will function perfectly well as vegetable gardening containers. Here Michael Kelly writes for the Independent.ie and has some sound, if not unconventional advice for would be container vegetable gardeners.

Best Tip To Grow Vegetables In Containers: Throw In The Kitchen Sink

I HAVE been pleasantly surprised with the success that I have had growing aubergines and peppers in containers and grow bags

grow vegetables in containers

Grow vegetables in containers that are unconventional. Photo by Hemera Technologies c/o Photos.Com.

this year. I have about 15-20 pepper plants in pots in the potting shed that are very productive — churning out bell and chilli peppers over the last two to three weeks.

For the first time ever for me, I’ve also had good aubergines — thanks to container growing. For the last few years, I’ve grown them in the ground in the polytunnel and I’ve never been rewarded with even a single aubergine (though the plant is attractive and produced lots of pretty flowers).

This year, however, I grew the aubergines in a grow bag in the potting shed and we’ve been enjoying beautiful sleek, black aubergines for a month now.

I’m blessed with plenty of space to grow here on the Home Farm, so I generally only grow in containers when I end up sowing far too many seeds in the spring. Rather than throw the excess plants out, it makes sense to make use of them by either (a) giving them away to fellow GIYers or (b) pot them up into containers.

They can then be moved to anywhere you have a bit of space.

If you are short on space, however, container growing can be a lifesaver — even a balcony or windowsill can become a productive GIY HQ. The good news is that with a little care most vegetables will grow well in containers.

In addition to the space-saving positives, there are a number of additional benefits to growing your food this way. For starters, they make an attractive addition to any garden. It’s also generally easier to get plants going in pots because they are not as vulnerable to pests and the elements as they are in the open ground. The great bane of the Irish grower — the slug (boo! hiss!) — is not as big a problem when growing in containers as it is in the soil.

Weeding is generally not a problem either, particularly when using bought compost. A container is, quite simply, a more controlled environment for a plant to grow in.

Read all of Michael’s tips and tricks here at independent.ie:

You can certainly grow vegetables in containers of almost any sort. You’re only limited by your own imagination and what you have available. See what you have lying about your yard or what’s available this weekend at your local garage sale. You’d probably surprise yourself at what you might think to bring home for that next new planting bed in the garden.

Please go ahead and share your inspirations by leaving a comment or two below. Click the like button to share your inspiration with a friend.

The day of fortune is like a harvest day, We must be busy when the corn is ripe.   —  Torquato Tasso

More Container Vegetable Gardening Tips And Tricks

When it comes to container vegetable gardening one of the best reasons to try it is to extend your growing season. If you get your late crops in on time but don’t want to worry about whether or not the first frost will wipe out your best efforts, you can always move the show indoors. That’s right! You can thumb your nose at Jack Frost and just move all of your plants indoors to finish up their growing. I mean, why should all of your efforts go to waste? It’s the best thing since climate control. This short article in MyWestTexas.Com provides some ideas for longer growing.

More Container Vegetable Gardening Tips And Tricks

An early frost can spell disaster for some plants in the fall vegetable garden. Fortunately, we can expect some advance notice of the

container vegetable gardening

Container vegetable gardening prevents frost damage late in the season by allowing plants to be moved indoors.Photo by FreezeFrameStudio c/o Photos.Com.

first frost. One way to be prepared to deal with an early frost is to grow your vegetables in containers. Containers can be relocated to a warm spot until the threat of frost has passed. Gardening in containers is more complicated than traditional gardening, but with careful attention to detail, you’ll be successful.

Let’s use tomatoes as our example. Very often, warm days follow the first frost of the season. This can help extend your growing season for a few more days; perhaps just long enough to allow your tomatoes to ripen on the plant and avoid searching out recipes for green tomatoes.

 By this time, you should be considering using transplants to achieve the greatest success before the first frost. Purchase young, vigorous tomato transplants from your nursery. Avoid tomatoes that have been too long in the nursery which you’ll recognize by their large and leggy appearance relative to their container. Also, steer away from tomatoes that appear wilted or diseased.
When it comes to some of the best ideas for container vegetable gardening, moving the show indoors has got to be at the top of the list. Why not try to plant some of your favorite vegetables in the late summer or early fall this year and get the best that nature has to offer when it turns cold outside (but where it’s still nice and warm inside).
Please leave a comment below and share your thoughts and experiences. Click on the like button and share it with a friend.
A world without tomatoes is like a string quartet without violins.  —  Laurie Colwin

Best Tips For Late Season Container Vegetable Gardening

I must admit that I truly enjoy container vegetable gardening. On the one hand, it does present a few potential challenges, what with the pots drying out faster than planting in the ground, or even in a raised bed setup. But I think some of those (minor) points are more than offset by the fact that you can bring your vegetable garden in much closer to the house, or even inside it for that matter. Since we’re getting into late summer and, dare I say it, early fall, I thought this article would be instructive. Writing for MySA in San Antonio, Texas, Calvin R. Finch gives us some tips and tricks about what we can plant and when we can plant it using containers during this time of the growing season.

Best Tips For Late Season Container Vegetable Gardening

Do you like gardening but don’t have the time or space for a full-sized raised-bed vegetable garden? Consider raising your favorite vegetables in containers.

container vegetable gardening

Best tips for fall container vegetable gardening. Photo by Kbirsa c/o Photos.Com.

Tomatoes, herbs, carrots, beets, radishes, onions, lettuce and greens can all be grown in containers as small as five gallons.

Plant your tomatoes in August. There are “Patio” tomatoes marketed specifically for containers but I don’t recommend them. The plants are very attractive, but the fruit is low quality.

Select a regular recommended variety such as Surefire, Solar Fire, 602, Tycoon, Celebrity or Dwarf Cherry Surprise (BHN 968).

Tomatoes require a container that is at least five gallons in capacity. Half of a whiskey barrel is ideal. The larger the container, the more room available for roots, moisture and nutrients.

Container vegetable gardening started in late summer provides an opportunity to significantly extend your growing season well into late fall. One of its most significant advantages is that if you do have colder weather earlier than anticipated, you can drag the whole show inside your house and not lose all of your hard work. How about that! So this season, why not try some container vegetable crops and see how it goes? You might be pleasantly surprised and well fed this fall.
Please feel free to leave a comment below and share your experiences with us. Click on the like button to share this with a friend.

To create a garden is to search for a better world. In our effort to improve on nature, we are guided by a vision of paradise. Whether the result is a horticultural masterpiece or only a modest vegetable patch, it is based on the expectation of a glorious future. This hope for the future is at the heart of all gardening.                                                                      —  Marina Schinz