vegetables

Some Of The Easiest Vegetables To Grow In A Container / Pot

Some Of The Easiest Vegetables To Grow In A Container / Pot

Vegetable Gardening in a Pot

For many people that live in cities they are limited to the amount of space where they can grow a vegetable garden. A great alternative to this dilemma would be to grow vegetables in containers on your deck or patio. There are several types of vegetables that are easy to grow and in this post we will offer our suggestions to what grows the best in containers.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes plants can produce an abundance of great tasting fruit without much care or space. The tomato plants require about 5 to 6 hours of sunlight. Depending on the type of tomatoes you would like to grow will determine the size of the container you will grow them in. One of my favorite tomatoes to grow which produce an abundant crop are cherry tomatoes.

Beans

Beans can be very easy to grow and do very well even if grown when they are gown in containers. The key is when you purchase the beans to grow find out if they are bush style or if they are climbers. If you purchase beans that climb then you will need a trellis or place the container by a wall or fence so the beans can climb. Beans do like to have sunshine and the pot that you will use needs to be about 14 – 16 inches in depth. Beans will produce from spring till frost and are a lot of fun to watch them grow.

Lettuce

Lettuce is one of those vegetables that you can harvest multiple times in a season and lettuce grows very fast but it prefers to be grown in cooler temperatures. For us in Florida winter is the best time to grow lettuce. If you are growing lettuce that only produces leaves and not heads it is best to use a wide planter with about 4 -6 inches between the plants. For lettuce that produces heads it should be spaced farther apart. It is best to keep the soil moist but make sure that the soil does drain properly.

Peppers

Both chili peppers and regular peppers are very easy to grow and a lot of fun to watch. Both types of peppers produce abundant amount of vegetables and they grow well in sunny warm areas. Keep the soil moist and well fertilized and grow in pots that are deep. Large pots that are more than 10 inches deep are best.

Carrots

Carrots grow fine in large pots and produce good yields, but they do grow better in cooler weather and they love to stay moist. It is best to plant them in deep pots so they have room to grow large.

Eggplant

Eggplant is not everyone favorite food but it is fairly easy to grow. They love the heat so temperatures here in Florida and anywhere in the south are ideal for growing eggplant. Here in Florida we grow eggplants year around. Eggplants do better in containers than they do in large gardens.

Mustard Greens

Here in Florida and the southern states mustard greens are loved by many. These greens are do not do well in the colder weather but thrive in sunny hot conditions. This wonderful vegetable is easy to grow and it does not require much attention. Mustard greens are great for salads and are rich in vitamins and nutrients.

Garlic

One of the more healthiest herb / vegetable to eat and it adds a lot of flavor to many recipes is garlic.  Garlic is easy to grow in containers, just make sure that the pot is 6 – 10 inches deep and good and wide. Space the bulbs while planting about six inches apart to get the best return on your yield.

Rhubarb

This brings back memories of when I was kid and my parents harvesting rhubarb for making pies and sauce. This plant is grows great in pots and you can receive multiple yields for years from each container you grow. Growing rhubarb can be grown both in the south and in the north even where winter can be fierce.

Okra

Another great vegetable to grow is Okra. This vegetable does wonderful in the warm summer season with plenty of sun and fertilizer and moisture. Here in Florida Okra is loved by almost everyone, when we go out to dinner we always order an appetizer of fried okra. Okra is easy to grow especially in containers but it would be better to grow the dwarf variety in containers since the plants do not grow so large.

 

Posted by Tom in gardening
Chicken Manure Is Great For The Garden And The Environment

Chicken Manure Is Great For The Garden And The Environment

Gardening can be a lot of fun and a great way to save money and be part of the urban homesteading community. Doing things like gardening and composting is a great way to teach your children how to get back to nature and give back to our environment. Some composting enthusiast call compost “black gold”. Nothing can be better than chicken manure.

Gardening Seasons

Depending where you are located you may have one season for gardening or if you are like my family living here in Central Florida we have two seasons for growing vegetables. The only issue with having two seasons is that you have to rotate the crops that you grow. If you don’t then the nutrients in the ground will get depleted over time. What I usually do, is after the season is done I will rototill the old plants into the soil which will compost over time and help feed the soil.

Adding Chickens

About ten years ago before I got into raising chickens I was visiting some friends and saw some of the most healthy looking vegetable plants in my life. My friend told me the secret to his gorgeous garden was chicken manure. He would go to a local farmer yearly and pick up a truck load of chicken manure and let it sit for the year to breakdown the nitrogen and then spread it over his garden area.

Having chickens especially hens are fun and enjoyable and they are great for gardens. When my tomatoes and other vegetables start getting attacked from insects I let lose my chickens and they clean up the pest that are eating my wonderful plants. Pest and insects are a fantastic treat for chickens, here in Florida we have these nasty critters called wood roaches and palmetto bugs. When I come across these or grubs in my lawn I give them to my chickens and they think they are in chicken heaven.

Chickens and Their Manure

Let’s get back to chicken manure and composting for your garden. The age old question is, what components make a great compost? There are four components that a compost needs in order to good rich soil compost. First is nitrogen material “green”, this would be items like grass clippings, thatch, chicken manure, coffee grounds, fruit and vegetable scraps or rotted fruit and vegetables, egg shells, human or animal hair. The second item would be carbon material “browns”, these items would be fallen leaves, twigs, wood shavings, and sawdust. Item number three is water and item number four is air. You will want to keep your compost moist and turn it over once a week to stir up the ingredients.

For my chicken coop I put in fresh hay once a week in the hen house. On Saturday or Sundays I clean out the hen house of all hay and chicken feces. Putting this directly on a garden is NOT good. The manure is way too high in nitrogen and will burn your garden and kill the plants. Each week I will take the hay and manure an add it to my compost, I will keep it moist and turn it once a week for about sixty to ninety days until the compost materials are broken down and feel like soil texture. When I am ready to plant I will take the compost and till it into my raised garden beds until the ratio of the beds are three parts natural soil to one part compost.

Composting is great for the environment and my family feels good that we are giving back to nature what we don’t use. That with the chicken hay and manure is helping to provide rich organic vegetables for our family and friends.  

         

Posted by Tom in chickens, gardening