Reaping the Benefits of Container Gardening
Container gardening is a great boon for people who would otherwise have no place to plant. It's also great for providing children with their first garden to tend, and it's wonderful for elders for whom an outdoor garden has become too much work. But did you know that container gardening offers advantages for all gardeners? In this newsletter we'll discuss those advantages, and also give you tips so that whatever containers you start will be sure to do well.
Why Plant in Containers?
The major advantages of container gardening are all the things you don't have to deal with: no weed infestations, no struggles with less-than-ideal soil, no soil-borne diseases, no nematodes, and no knocking yourself out digging new beds. What's more, containers can be much more productive than traditional gardens, and what a great thing to have a supply of fresh veggies and herbs right at arm's reach, all year 'round! Finally, container gardening can be a wonderful way to beautify your home. For example, you can easily grow lavender indoors, and your guests will not only enjoy its beautiful blue flowers but will also delight in its sweet fragrance.
So what do you need to get started with container gardening? Well, of course, containers. We sell some free-standing beauties, such as the Carolina Planter, the Charleston Planter, and the Chelsea Two-Tier Planter. Our nicest mounted planter is the Carolina Hanging Deck Planter, although the York Planter Baskets are also fine, and they come in either side-mounted or top-mounted versions. If you have vinyl siding, York also makes a model that will mount right onto your siding. Another way to go is to use box planters such as the Bloom Master: you can place these next to each other and extend them to whatever length is ideal for your purposes. They're very durable and will last forever.
We realize that the cost of buying planters can add up, but we hope a tight budget won't deter you from trying your hand at container gardening. It's easy to build planters yourself for the cost of the wood, and even easier to use things you have around the house as planters. Some people go to auctions or garage sales and find items like old barrels that they take home and turn into planters. Some people even make planters from such unlikely objects as old tires.
What to Plant
If a plant will do well outdoors in your area, it will probably do well in a container, providing it gets adequate sunlight. Some people do not venture beyond growing tomatoes, but more adventurous gardeners discover that peppers, eggplant, green onions, beans, lettuce, squash, radishes parsley, and many other vegetables will thrive in containers. To learn the details about what to plant, which varieties grow best, how deep to plant, etc., a good place to start is this fine article from the AgriLife Extension at Texas A&M University. However, if you want all the information you need in one very-well-organized and convenient place, we highly recommend The Bountiful Container, a book widely celebrated as being the best available on the subject of growing edible plants in containers. One thing that will surprise you when you read this book is that in addition to its coverage of veggies, it includes instructions for growing lemons, strawberries, gooseberries, figs, and even apples, peaches, and grapes in containers. There's also a section on growing edible flowers such as tart begonias, pepper nasturtiums, clove-spicy dianthus, and sweet daylilies.
Talking about flowers, we want to tell you about an exciting new option for those of you who like to buy flowering plants from us: we call it Flowering Combos and what it consists of are expertly chosen combinations of flowering plants grown together in the same tray.
We offer twelve different combos that range from the patriotic red, white, and blue of Bunker Hill, to the exotic, pastel tones of Bermuda Skies. By ordering a combo, you no longer have to figure out what plants look good together and grow well together, because the master gardeners who came up with these flower combos already have. Just take a look at the photos and choose the combos you like the most. It's never been easier to have a beautiful mix of flowers to grace the inside or outside of your home!
Premium Organic Fertilizer On Sale
Lastly, we'd like to sing the praises of the type of fertilizer that Rosemarie McGee and Maggie Stuckey most highly recommend for container gardening, and one that we can vouch for as being an excellent all-round soil amendment: liquid seaweed fertilizer.
We are pleased to be currently offering a 40% discount on the one-quart size of Neptune's Harvest Organic Liquid Seaweed Fertilizer, the best brand of liquid seaweed fertilizer we know of, and one that has become famous for its use by those who grow giant pumpkins and other outsize vegetables. We think you'll be very pleased with the results you get from the superior nutrition this organic fertilizer imparts to your plants.
Until next time, happy gardening from all of us at Garden Harvest Supply!