Many of you may have heard lately of something called vertical gardening. It’s quickly rising in popularity, especially in homes with limited space. Vertical gardening is growing up instead of out with your plants. It is a wonderful way to save time, space, and effort!
Vertical gardening is a great way to save time as well as your back (from weeding). When you grow plants in raised planters you use less soil. You only need enough for the plants to grow in. This means you have less (if any) weeds. Another bonus is you do not have to bend over. You can plant things as high as you would like. Plants off the ground require much less care than a traditional garden. You can even set up a drip irrigation system to save additional time. Something else to consider is that containers are less accessible to pests and animals that enjoy eating your plants.
Gardening up instead of out saves a lot of space in your yard, or if you don’t have a yard it offers you options for growing that you may not have thought of. There are many choices for vertical garden containers, including using pots, planters or recycling materials like old gutters. Anything you can stack or hang will work. Many crops, such as lettuce, require very minimal soil depth to grow. You can use anything from a wall, fence or balcony for your garden. Look for plants that are “bush” variety. They will grow better in your containers. Some trailing vegetables like squash will climb a trellis with proper training. This also reduces the chance of rot.
There are some things to keep in mind if you are growing items in containers. The first is that they run out of nutrients faster. Keeping on top of fertilizing will keep your plants growing well. Making your own compost will provide a source of nutrition and also help with moisture control. Plants in containers will also dry out faster so make sure you water more often. Being off the ground they are often exposed to higher heat levels. Plant appropriately for the area your planters are hanging in. Pick shadier spots for sensitive plants.
Vertical gardening can be an extremely inexpensive way to provide food and splashes of color to your landscape. It utilizes areas that you may not have considered for planting before. Growing some of your own food reduces your impact on the planet. The food you grow is also healthier (make sure you grow organic) and fresher than any supermarket. If you have extra produce offer it for sale or give it away to your friends and family. You could also learn to can and preserve your own food!
Do you have a space or time saving gardening tip? We’d love to see it in the notes section below.
Jessica Wick is one of our very own E3Live employees, she enjoys teaching her three children about organic gardening, has a horse, a goat, 2 dogs and a flock of chickens that also love E3Live!