Gardening doesn’t have to be all about large rectangles of vegetables all in a row. Today’s families may have temporary housing or live on a lot with very little space for planting.
No matter if you are time or space challenged, you can plant a garden of flowers, vegetables or both. Just like anything worth doing, though you need a little information and a lot of planning.
For a family on the go, a great way to garden is in containers.
If you have little ones, planting a spring garden that you can take with you if you need to move could become a meaningful family tradition. Start with large pots, at least 10-12” in diameter.
The smaller the pot, the more difficult it will be to keep it watered. Use a soil-less media that includes fertilizer and water-saving crystals. It will be pricier — but will pay dividends in the long run.
Incorporate annual flowers, such as pansies and snapdragons in the containers that also include edible greens like lettuce and kale.
Use a small trellis and grow sugar snap peas. They vine up to provide height in your containers and kids like to eat the snaps right off the vine. What a great way to get kids to eat their veggies.
The low-cost method is to seed plants instead of buying starters.
For most large seed, soaking overnight will help speed up the germination process. For the most instant gratification, seed radishes. They germinate in only 7-10 days and go from seed to ready to harvest in only about 25 days.
Always be ready to plant again after you harvest with season-appropriate plants. Later in the year, everyone likes to have a few tomatoes to enjoy fresh from the vine.
I like cherry or “Roma” tomatoes since they seem easier and more forgiving of irregular watering — speaking of watering, remember to keep your container garden on the go moist, but not soggy.
Our climate in Georgia can be unpredictable — frosting one week and warm and mild the next; therefore, be prepared to cover tender plants or pump up the water if it gets hot and dry.
For more information about container gardening, visit our website at www.caes.uga.edu and search for container gardening or any other topic you are interested in.