Summer is ending and our gardens are wilting. The season of fresh vegetables just goes by too fast. It is time to grind up those stalks and cover the garden with hay for composting. But does this really mean that we are done eating fresh vegetables until next June? Not really! You can grow vegetables indoors using these tips.
There are two ways to start your indoor vegetable garden. One, you can transfer your existing plants from outdoor to indoor pots. Two, you can sprout seeds and plant them. Some plants, like tomato plants, normally need to be staked. But, if you hang a planter for your tomatoes, you don’t necessarily have to stake them. The stalks can simply hang down like vines.
Choose large pots that drain really well. Place rocks in the bottom of each container, then potting soil or top soil mixed with plenty of compost. If your summer garden did well outside, you can use the soil from there to fill your pots. Although, sometimes this soil is depleted of nutrients and should be replenished with compost.
All of your indoor vegetables need to have plenty of sunlight and heat. If possible, put them near a heater vent. They must get as much sunlight as possible, so all plants need to be near a window. You might even consider placing planters in buckets attached to an accordion divider so that all of them have equal sun. You can even move the whole apparatus from one window in the morning to another full sun window in the afternoon. Putting your accordion divider on casters will make the move easier on your back. The vertical garden also eliminates the need to bend over to tend to and harvest vegetables.
Another back saving tip is to roll your vertical garden outside to water. If it’s not too cold, you can roll it out onto the deck or patio and spray it down with the water hose. Use an automatic hose reel to help your back even more.
As the days get shorter, you will have to use a UV lamp to give your vegetables enough light to grow. If you notice your plants doing poorly, increase the amount of heat and/or sun that they are getting every day. Make sure that you are not overwatering, and that you are pruning off any dead or dying sections that may be stealing nutrients from your healthy vegetables.
Having an indoor vegetable garden can be a challenge and can take up a lot of space. But, if you tend to it carefully, you could be rewarded with fresh vegetables year round.