You can grow vegetable gardens indoors year round, with the help of technology and some know-how. It may your only option as a renter, or you may like to germinate your seeds indoors and transplant vegetables outdoors when the weather is just right. Use these tips to keep your vegetables growing well:
1 – Set Plants Near the Window
Even if you plan to use artificial grow lights (beware the mercury risks of CFL bulbs), it’s important to let your vegetable gardens get natural sunlight. You may have to rearrange your apartment to set plants near windows. For example, put plants behind your couch. The plants will get the needed light and stay out of sight from children that might want to tug on it. You can also use tables, stools, chairs or whatever you have to elevate the plants to reach windows.
2 – Water Plants Well
Novice gardeners take an intuitive approach to watering vegetable gardens. Don’t assume that wet soil is enough for your plants to get the water they need. You may not be watering enough, and as a result, the water may not be reaching the roots of many of your plants. You need to water until it drains at the bottom of your pots. If you don’t have holes for water drainage, make them. You’ll drown the plants otherwise.
3 – Develop a Watering Schedule
It’s easy to forget to water plants, if they’re tucked away behind a couch or in another room that you dedicate to your gardens. The solution is to develop a watering schedule, and one that’s easy to remember. Perhaps you can do it every day after breakfast or lunch. You’ll have to consider your own schedule and habits, to see what makes sense for you. If you don’t water on a regular basis, your vegetable garden won’t survive.
4 – Indoor Plant Watering Hoses
If you only have a few plants around your apartment, you only need a watering can or something like it to water your garden. If you’ve gone beyond that, and are making a serious attempt to grow a good amount of vegetables indoors, then you should consider buying an indoor plant watering hose. It attaches to your kitchen or bathroom faucet and you can use it as far as 40 feet away. When you have to do a lot of watering, you’ll appreciate not having to go back and forth to refill your watering can. You can attach a spray nozzle to the hose, so that you don’t destroy plants as you water.
5 – Use Compost
You can buy organic compost at a garden center or nursery, since buying a kitchen composter may not be doable as a renter. If you do have the space and the funds, you can buy a composter and make your own. Compost is a great option for your vegetable gardens, and you can avoid the chemicals in fertilizers.
Plan how you’ll maintain your indoor vegetable gardens, or you’ll lose plants that you’ve worked so hard to take care of.