Gardening Big Ideas for Small Gardens
Gardening has grown into a very popular pastime here in America over the last few years; helping people get in touch with nature and save a few bucks along the way. There are hundreds of people, especially here in Idaho that start gardening every year and have been benefitted both financially and physically with the good natural vegetables they grow. However, due to space constrictions, it is not only difficult, but can be near impossible to garden—even here in the Treasure Valley. It can be a frustrating predicament to be in, but, luckily, if you are in this situation, there are some great ideas that can help you get the garden you want.
1) Don’t Just Stick to the Backyard
Backyards are typically where people plant their gardens, and why not? Backyards offer privacy and protection for your sproutlings, but if you have more front or side yard than backyard, you might want to consider switching to one of those more open areas. However, planting in the front yard presents some problems; for instance, sometimes the sprinkler systems are more intricate in the front yard, so it’s best to know where all the lines are beforehand. (You should do this whether you are in the front yard of the back before you do any digging.) But, if you want to get around a lot of digging in the first place, you may want to try using raised planters. These can be made out of whatever material you want to make it out of, and at whatever height you like as well. However, if you do decide to dig straight into the ground, it would be best to section off the part of your yard that will be used for a garden. That way people will know that it is there and it will be less likely to be trampled. Now, this is something that you need to do wherever you plant your garden, but it is especially important when planting in your front yard because there is usually more foot traffic in the front yard than in the back.
2) Utilize Your Roof
This should only be done if you have easy and safe access to your roof. The roof is a great place for your garden for many reasons, but you need to be sure that it is safe first and that you are comfortable climbing up there every day—and that your roof can hold weight. If, and only if, your roof is safe for you and the added weight of plants then you can proceed using some of your roof space for a garden. Roofs are great for gardens for several reasons. The first being that when you plant on the roof your garden set apart from everything else; there is zero foot traffic on your roof so you won’t need to worry about your garden being in the way of anything else. Another reason why the roof is a perfect place for a garden is the exposure to the sun.
Usually, trying to plant your garden so it’s not going to be in the shadow of your home half the day is one of the hardest parts of picking a place for you plot, but on the roof they will get much more exposure to the sun than on the ground.
3) Window Planters and Five Gallon Buckets
If you are in an apartment, or have no other place to plant your garden, then you may want to try the classic window planter method. Unfortunately, you will be quite limited on what you can grow, but, with some consulting with the workers at the garden shop, you’ll be able to find something to grow in no time. You could, however, use more planter boxes, if you window space is limited, by setting aside some space in an extra bedroom or something to put your planters—assuming that they can all get light there. If you don’t like the idea of planters, or just want to grow different stuff, then try a five gallon bucket. These, when placed out on a balcony, can be a great mini garden. They allow you to plant things that require more space for their roots like potatoes or tomatoes. There are dozens of videos and tutorials online explaining how to use the buckets effectively so you yield the most possible crop.
4) Shoe Organizers for Herb Garden
Herbs are great for people in tight spaces because they don’t use as much space when they grow. Herbs are usually on the smaller side which means they can be used in much smaller spaces. There are many ideas online for herb gardens as well, but one of the more clever ones is to use a back of the door shoe organizer. Each individual pocket can be used to plant an herb and the whole thing can be left in your kitchen. The pockets will need to be modified, however. They need to be able to drain off the water so that the dirt doesn’t become soupy and kill the plants. This means that when you water it that you will need to either put a tray to catch the water beneath the organizer, or you will need to put the whole thing outside. There are more specific plans for the shoe organizer herb garden online if you want more information.
5) Plant Plants that Can Grow Together
This isn’t a tip on where to plant your plants, but rather how to maximize your space. There are certain plants that can grow in the same area because of how they are formed. One of these combinations is corn and green beans (or peas). This is a successful combination because the corn will grow vertically and the beans or peas can grow up the stalk of the corn without causing any damage. This way you are doubling what you can grow in a single spot. Another combination is to plant corn and watermelons in the same area. This is great because, like before, the corn grows upward and the watermelon stays low to the ground. This can be done with pumpkins or any other kind of squash really.
There are more combinations like these online so search around for something that will help you maximize the yield from your garden.
Gardening is a fun thing to do, there is no doubt about it, and now, no matter what kind of space you have, you too can participate. All you need is a little creativity.