Sustainability is about ecology, economy and equity.- Ralph Bicknese

Yardless Gardening

canSo you want to start a garden. Grow things. Hold a watering can and feel like a nurturer of life. The only thing standing in your way? A lack of yard. No outside space to call your own. So you hang your head, lost to an eternal absence of that beautiful (insert favorite color) watering can you’ve had your eye on for so long. But wait! Perhaps there is a way that we apartment-dwellers can have our confining indoor spaces and grow things in them too.

Growing your own herbs is possible without a yard due to containers designed to be used in such an environment. They can usually fit on windowsills, providing the herbs growing in them with the necessary sunlight, especially at this time of year. From the inside, they’ll need water from you and your beloved watering can. Dreams being realized. And since herbs grow on a continuous basis, you can have them fresh throughout the year.

Food, while more complicated than herbs, is still possible to grow indoors, providing you have a convenient windowsill that soaks up the sun. Vegetables such as squash, tomatoes, and cucumbers are able to grow out of buckets in smaller spaces, while carrots and peppers can grow in well-cleaned jugs of bleach. After washing out the buckets or jugs, drill drain holes in the bottom to make for well-drained soil. Fill them up with potting soil and plant the seeds, placing the containers on bricks or wooden blocks for drainage purposes.

Vegetables also need fertilizer, which for indoor growing should be used every few days at half the recommended amount, mixing with water for the most effective result. If you can only use dry fertilizers, apply a limited amount at the top of each container once every three to four weeks.

After picking your veggies, you can reuse the containers for future growing. In order to turn the vines and detritus into ideal compost, fill a bucket about one third from the bottom with soil, add the debris, then fill it with more soil and water. After letting this sit for a few weeks, transfer it into another bucket. This strategy aerates the soil and allows the compost to mix thoroughly. Add some more water after mixing everything up to keep things moist. When the time comes for more growing, you’ll be ready to go with some well-prepared soil.

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