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When to Use Pots to Plant Vegetables

Updated on March 21, 2012
Clay pots make suitable homes for vegetables in a potted garden.
Clay pots make suitable homes for vegetables in a potted garden.

The rewarding experience of growing your own vegetables manifests itself at the time of harvest. Fresh, crisp vegetables -- crunchy and nutritious -- gives you the best food, straight from the soil. Just being able to plant seeds in the soil is a blessing, and if you have a plot of land -- small or big -- use it to plant vegetables. But if your outdoor space limits the available to a deck, patio, terrace or a sunny window, as long as the shining sun and fresh air reaches your growing space, it is a place suitable for planting.

Winter is the time for planting veggies indoors.
Winter is the time for planting veggies indoors. | Source

Before the Growing Season

If you live a region that has a short growing season, get a headstart on your garden by planting your vegetables in pots. Select a window in the house that receives a lot of sunlight, and add a few plant grow lights to enhance the vegetables' light exposure. Plant the vegetables by seed, or purchase seedlings to start your garden. Water and nurture the plants regularly until the danger of frost passes. Then prepare the soil outside, and transplant the vegetables to the garden.

Grow vegetables in pots when planning a move.
Grow vegetables in pots when planning a move. | Source

When Moving

If want to grow a vegetable garden but are planning to move in the spring or summer, start your vegetables in pots. Plants, much like people, experience stress during a move. Rather than plant the vegetables in the garden only to uproot them later on, the pots offer the mobility and stability the plants need during the move. After settling in your new home and preparing the soil to grow vegetables, transplant them from the pots into your new garden.

A hardscape garden makes an ideal setting for potted vegetables.
A hardscape garden makes an ideal setting for potted vegetables. | Source

Potted Vegetables Add Design Flair to Garden Settings

Hardscape gardens make outdoor living virtually maintenance-free. The downside - a shortage of greenery with its varying textures and colors. More than just an improvisation, smart placements of potted vegetables, plants and flowers actually define specialty landscape designs.

In a Hardscape Garden

If you have a yard but no soil -- as in a completely paved outdoor room or a dry landscape of pebbles, rocks and boulders -- then potted vegetable plants introduces both the softness of added greenery and edible picks to enjoy right outside your door. Play around with the placement of your potted vegetable garden to get the best layout and sunlight exposure for the plants.

Vegetable Planter | Flower Planter | Outdoor Planters - Self Watering Red Planter Box by Monkey Pots!
Vegetable Planter | Flower Planter | Outdoor Planters - Self Watering Red Planter Box by Monkey Pots! | Source

On a Deck, Patio, or Terrace

Even when outdoor space is limited to a deck, patio or a terrace, pots offer a portable garden to grow vegetables. If you have just enough space for the pots, then you have enough space to grow your own vegetables. Even for small outdoor spaces, pots add height, curves, dimension and texture, and with the addition of live plants, they shine as decorative, outdoor accents. Placement is important for flow and aesthetic appeal. Soften the corners of the space by placing a collection of pots, or outline its perimeter with a row of pots.

Growing vegetables in pots and in tight spaces is not something new. In traditional civilizations in the Americas, Africa, and Asia, farmers are known for developing hillsides into cultivated, terraced gardens. These gardens barely had enough room for one person to pass.


In a Sunny Window

When outdoor gardening is not an option, utilize the blessing of a well-lit, sunny window to grow your vegetables. Just like starting your garden indoors, the only difference is the vegetables will grow to maturity indoors. Soil nutrients and aeration, adequate watering, and proper lighting are essential to a successful indoor garden.

If you have or can install a bay window or even a solarium, then that is even better, but for those who cannot, use the brightest, sunniest window as a home for your veggies. And don't forget to open the window often to freshen the air and make your vegetable plants happy.

Which scenario defines where or why you would grow vegetables in pots?

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