There are few things more satisfying than watching those little seeds you planted not so long ago, slowly spring from the earth to form nourishing vitamin rich food for you and the people you love. Sadly, in this day and age, not everyone has a big backyard with soil suited for growing vegetables. Some of us don’t have any yard at all! However, even the smallest patio, back porch, balcony or doorstep can provide enough room for a beautiful and productive container garden.
Planting in pots has a long history dating back to the first Egyptian, Roman, and Oriental cultures. The legendary (possibly mythical) Hanging Gardens of Babylon were considered one of the Seven Wonders of the World and Henry the VIII was so impressed with the Hampton Court Gardens that he had it’s owner arrested and claimed it for himself.
Not only does growing in pots allow you to have a portable garden that can be moved to create any effect you want, but they can be brought inside as soon as the weather turns cold for a fresh, year round supply of flowers, vegetables and herbs.
Planters are particularly great if you live in the city. For inspiration, one needs only to turn to the rooftop gardener’s of New York City. Working with a limited amount of space they have transformed these areas, using an assortment of garden supplies, potting mixes and various plants, into lush getaways high above the din and chaos of the city.
Combined with existing garden beds containers can be used to accent plantings by adding height, color and other features that may be lacking. They can also be used to confine invasive plants that would normally over run your gardening space, such as mint, St. John’s wort, or grasses to name a few.
A marvelous advantage is that you can completely control the soil quality. This is a major boon to anyone who has plants that struggle yearly with diseases, insect pests, or poor conditions. By being able to hand pick your growing medium, and nutrients, you can ensure that your plants thrive under optimal conditions.