Thursday, December 29, 2005

Container Gardening Tips

Container gardening is all the rage. With fewer people having extensive acreage to plant their gardens, container gardening is becoming an option for more and more people. Instead of believing that you need a huge area for your garden, get into the mindset that all you need are a few containers here and there, and you can have close to a full garden without taking up the space. Here are a few of the benefits to container gardening for you to consider.

First, it is flexible, flexible, flexible! You can grow a container garden anywhere. The only real limit is your own imagination. You will find that you will be putting together the garden as you go. If you have coffee containers, they will work and may look okay in your windowsill. If you have a patio or balcony, you may want something nicer and can get a decorative flowerpot. Under the right conditions, you can use vases or other canisters from your home.

The flexibility of a container garden also is great because it permits you to have a garden when you otherwise could not. If you have hard soil that is not suitable for gardening, you can still have a container garden. If you live in a concrete jungle or in an apartment complex, gardening is still open to you if you consider container gardening.

In addition to the flexibility, container gardens are mobile. If you know that you will be using your tomatoes frequently in the next day or so, then you can bring in the plant. You do not have to trek outside anytime you need it. You also can take plants with you easily if you need to or move them if you find that the first spot does not get enough sunlight.

The mobility has another benefit - replanting. If you plant cucumbers only to find that the aphids in your garden enjoy the tasty leaves, you are stuck with cucumbers that are not going to produce much fruit. On the other hand, if you have cucumbers in a series of coffee cans, you can start over. Pick up some new containers and replant the cukes. You will find that you have much more control over pests destroying your crops if you container garden.

Another benefit is that you can control the size of your garden much more easily. In a traditional garden, you have to either use the space you have or decide on the size of the garden before you get started so that you can prepare the soil. A container garden does not have those restrictions. Instead you can keep the containers in so many places that you have almost limitless garden size. In fact, there are people who live in small apartments who grow all of their own fruits and vegetables in various containers.

You can even put corn in your windowsill if you would like. It is easy to add or subtract from the size of the garden anytime. For example, this year I plan to move from a single tomato plant to five tomato plants. If I get into it and decide that five it too much or too little, changing will not be a major problem with a container garden.

If you are handy with decorating styles, you will find container gardening suitable to you. In addition to getting beautiful containers to keep your plants, you can make your home and outside areas look beautiful and elegant with the right design of the plants. You can mask empty parts of your home with your plants or help your yard look lush if it is not. There is no end to the decoration that container gardening will allow you.

The bottom line is that container gardening has a number of benefits over traditional gardening. While traditional gardening definitely has its benefits, container gardening is a great option for people who are willing to try something a little different with their gardening to explore their creative side. If you are new to gardening or are looking for something different, then you may want to give it a try. You may find that it will be something you can enjoy for years to come.

By Julia Mercer

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