Five Trends in Container Gardening
You don’t need a huge, landscaped yard to enjoy colorful plants and a fresh garden. Many people who live in apartments and condos or have limited mobility use container gardening to dig into lawn and garden season.
Container gardens are easier to maintain than full gardens, and you can enjoy them all year by simply bringing your plants indoors. Here are five small-scale landscape trends to try:
Microgreens & Ornamental Herbs
Satisfy your inner foodie by growing your own ingredients. Microgreens are hot on restaurant menus these days, but they’re easy to grow at home. Pick a warm, sunny windowsill (microgreens need at least four hours of direct sunlight a day). Grab a clean container like a takeout dish or disposable pie plate, and poke a few drainage holes in the bottom. Place an inch or two of potting soil on the bottom, then scatter seeds for cabbage, chia and other salad greens or herbs on the soil. Cover them with a bit more dirt, and mist them once or twice daily.
Pairing Veggies & Flowers
Mixing flowers and vegetables in one container adds visual interest, and it can be a mutually beneficial relationship for the plants. Petunias and tomatoes in particular work well together. Cherry tomatoes called Tidy Treats also fit well with flowers and look lovely on a kitchen counter.
Fairy gardens are a fun way to mix a love of plants with a little imagination. And they’re so easy to make, you can even get the kids involved. Start by sketching a design, then decide on a container. Fill it with potting mix to about an inch from the top. Then comes the fun: add accessories like little houses, furniture, animals or even a water feature using a bowl. Fairy gardens are a great way to upcycle old items and crafting scraps (bowls, corks, fabric, small toys). Finally, plant miniature plants and succulents inside for a whimsical touch.
Products like the Earth Box come with everything you need for container gardening – just add seeds, sunlight and water. A special reservoir at the bottom of the box keeps plants well watered.
If you have limited space, don’t be afraid to plant “up.” Vertical planters and living walls make a great focal point for a room and allow you to grow many plants in a small footprint. Think of a bookshelf, but for greens! Tomato towers also help you grow plants straight and tall in a small area.