Inspirational Ideas to Grow your Own

Inspirational Ideas to Grow your Own

With more and more people favouring organic food, it is no surprise that the popularity of growing your own food continues to increase. And, as National Allotment Week take place  between 14th and 20th August 2017,  there has simply never been a better time to explore the concept of growing your own.

However, not all of us are fortunate to have acres of garden or allotments but it is just as easy to grow produce in small spaces with a little know-how. We share some tips to take advantage of hanging baskets, window boxes and containers to maximise your growing space.


Container Cultivation

There are many pros to growing in containers which include increased control of aspects like soil type, access to sunlight and location. The process is very similar to normal garden planting but there are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Good drainage holes are essential to avoid clogging the plant with too much water
  • Check plants regularly to ensure they're not too dry but on the other hand not soggy either.
  • Most plants benefit from regular pruning to help them stay healthy and flower for longer.


Crops most suited to containers include beetroot, beans, carrots, peas, radishes, rocket, chillies and peppers, salad leaves and tomatoes. 

Complementary to containers are Hanging Baskets which can be equally effective.


Hanging Horticulture

They are a slightly more unusual option but still just as easy! Hanging baskets are a great idea to free up garden space as well as adding a quirky touch to your garden. Who says fruit and vegetables can't be as pretty as flowers?!

Tomatoes are well suited to hanging baskets as the fruit is light enough to bear the drooping action and the plant also looks pretty with the tomatoes trailing down the sides. It is important that the basket can support the weight of the vines and water - opt for a metal chain basket as it is sturdier than the plastic hook styles. Another tip is to be vigilant with watering as hanging baskets dry out quickly. Ensure the plants will also receive enough sunlight, particularly if the basket is hung on a shady porch.

On the whole, there isn't much difference from growing in pots on the ground! Plants suited to growing up high include strawberries, salad leaves, herbs, green beans and peas.


Industry indoors

For those with no outdoor space at all it is still feasible to grow produce indoors. Plants such as: avocados, carrots, lemons, mandarin oranges, salad greens, spring onions, tomatoes and herbs can all successfully be grown indoors.

For those wishing to take indoor growing seriously it might be worth investing in grow lights to help maintain optimal light and temperature conditions. However, by ensuring you have well-draining soil and containers with either holes or stones in the bottom you can easily start your indoor garden. It is important to use a shallow drainage container if opting for containers with holes to prevent water spilling on your floor or windowsill.


Upcycling Inspiration

For more creative container planting solutions try hunting round the house for any unwanted items. Even mundane items such as soup cans and tea pots can be spruced up with a bit of paint and some beautiful flowers.

Shoe holders are a great idea to hang on walls and fences as plants can be added to each of the compartments. Some other ideas could be old wellie boots, colanders or even unwanted tyres!


Timed to Perfection

Certain crops should be sown in the spring for summer fruit such as tomatoes, strawberries and peas but many herbs can be planted to great effect all year round.

So, with a little effort and time you can enjoy the fruits of your labours across the seasons. What are you waiting for?