Size Doesn’t Matter!

Get your head out of the gutter and in the garden!

It doesn’t matter where you live, you can have a garden. Whether you have a large yard and can plant into the ground or only have a balcony, you can plant in containers. Creativity is key! Over three posts I will discuss different options for gardening depending on the space you have to work with, to include small yards, apartments or renters, large yards and unconventional, recyclable choices.

In this first post I would like to discuss choices for small yards, apartment living and/or renters. While I have never lived in an apartment, I have rented for the past four years. I have had to be creative in the ways of having a garden and I know that it can be challenging. Whether you have an apartment with little to no outside space, a balcony or you rent and are not allowed to ‘dig up the yard,’ there are ways to have a garden.

Here are some ideas for creating a garden space:

  • Traditional plant pots

    A few of my containers!

    A few of my containers!

  • Hanging baskets

    One of my mom's hanging baskets.

    One of my mom’s hanging baskets.

  • Rain gutters

    Rain gutter planters

    Rain gutter planters

Some traditional planting pots can be really pretty albeit really expensive, but there are planting pots available that are inexpensive and serve the same purpose. While hanging baskets are traditionally for ornamentals (flowers), eatables can be planted in them as well. I would suggest use caution planting anything with a lot of weight throughout its growth, i.e. a tomato plant, cucumbers, squash, etc. unless you know that it is hung very well! Good alternatives could be lettuces, radishes, green onions and herbs. Be considerate in the height you hang the basket and what you plant, so to make sure you can reach what you plant to harvest! Rain gutters is a good option for very small spaces and people that don’t want to take up the leg area in their already small spaces. They can be hung over a railing or along a fence line. They can be used rain gutters or bought from a hardware store cheaply. Ideas for planting in rain gutters include leaf lettuces, radishes, green onions, baby carrots and some herbs.

The size of the container will determine what you can or shouldn’t plant into containers, hanging baskets and rain gutters. When buying seed or transplants look to see what the suggested plant spacing is on the package or container. One thing to remember when using any container is to always have drainage holes in the bottom so water can drain out. You don’t want to drown your plants!

I hope these ideas help you create or bring new ideas to how you can have your own garden! Stay tuned for more ideas that are unconventional and up-cycled that I know a small space could use! If you have more ideas, I would love to hear about them and try them out!

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2 Responses to Size Doesn’t Matter!

  1. Leigh says:

    How do you decide how many holes or what size of holes to put in the bottom of your containers?

    • Great question! It really depends on the size of the container. For a small to medium container, I would suggest at least 1/2 to 1″ hole in the bottom. For large containers, 1″ to 1 1/2″. If you are concerned about your soil escaping through the bottom, you can cover the holes with wire mesh or burlap. The water will be able to escape, but the soil won’t! In deciding how many holes, look at the shape and area of the container. In the gutters, I made holes the entire length, but in most of my pots, I only have one. Helpful hint: it is better to have a few too many than not enough. I hope this helped!

      Sarah 😉

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