You don’t need to live on a farm to enjoy growing vegetables at home. Many vegetables do extremely well if not better when planted in large containers versus those that are planted in the ground. Vegetable container gardening is a great way to introduce children to where food comes from. Our last frost date is typically April 20th and since we’re less than a week away, it is time to get out there and get started.
Three simple steps to a successful veggie container garden are:
1. Your containers must receive at least six hours of sun per day.
2. The bigger the container the better.
3. Plant varieties that are suited to containers.
Use a soil mix made for containers, you’ll spend less time watering this summer. Darker containers can get warmer on cement so be aware of your container type and placement. Mobile plant stands and dollies make it easier to move large containers around your deck, balcony or cement.
After April 20th you can plant bush cucumber seeds and bush green beans in your prepared containers. You can start seed potatoes in a container or a potato bag, they’re a lot of fun to grow and harvest.
Tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and Okra thrive in containers and warm weather, their starts can be transplanted around May 1st. Make sure you plant a smaller tomato variety such as a Patio, Early Girl, Celebrity or Rutgers, they grow less than three feet tall.
Plant marigolds, nasturtiums, herbs and other companion plants to make your containers pretty along with functional.
Veggie gardening is a fun, rewarding experience for all ages. Give it a try this year, you’ll be glad you did.
For more information please see the link below from the NC Extension Office. Though the publication comes from NC, it is full of valuable and useful information for Georgia gardeners:
For information on companion planting, see the chart below.