Patio Vegetable Gardening Guide

Apartment Window Windowsill Patio

At first, the terms 'apartment' & 'gardening' seem to be something of a contradiction in terms. Gardens have traditionally been grown outdoors, in expansive spaces with long hours of afternoon sunlight. In comparison, apartments are considerably limited by sunlight and available space for seed sowing. Despite these challenges, there are some significant advantages to patio or indoor growing. Principally, such environments offer stability, with only minor fluctuations in heat and energy throughout the daily and yearly cycles. This offers potential for year-round gardening, and with persistence, a steady of supply of fresh, healthy, homegrown produce such as Lettuce and Herbs grown right on your patio, in your Window or Windowsill.

Apartment Gardening

Apartment VegetablesApartment Gardening
Crops well-suited for apartment gardening are those with low to moderate light needs, minimal required soil-medium depth, and short time to harvest. Generally speaking, leafy greens or crops cultivated at a developmental stage prior to full maturity will make the best choices. Other types of edibles, including those cultivated for their root, fruit, or seed require significantly more energy and time, and are not ideal for limited space gardening. Popular leafy greens such as lettuce, arugula, kale and others have the added benefit of a shorter time to harvest, typically less than 2 months from seed to dinner plate.


Apartment SproutsIn addition to growing leafy greens indoors, baby greens, microgreens and sprouts can all be cultivated indoors with little space and energy. Unlike vegetables grown to maturity, these types of edibles do not develop mature root systems and are more limited in their abilities to take up nutrients
from the soil. These types of growing techniques require less time than standard ones, with sprouts generally needing less than one week from seed to harvest, microgreens less than two weeks and baby greens less than one month. There
are drawbacks to these conveniences though, notably the greater quantities of
seed required for sizable yields, especially microgreens and sprouts.


Patio GardensPatio gardens cultivated in containers allow the space or soil limited gardener the opportunity to cultivate an abundance of fresh vegetables. This type of gardening allows for greater control of growing conditions. Containers can be easily moved to provide optimum light exposure, and the growing medium can be easily monitored and amended periodically. As with any type of container gardening, the quality of the soil is especially important. An ideal growing medium should be lightweight, well-drained and rich in organic compost or similar material.


Patio TomatoesHanging containers are another way to make use of available space and light on patios. While such containers may be limited by space, a number of edible plants can be cultivated in hanging baskets, including cherry tomatoes, strawberries, edible flowers, and certain varieties of herbs and beans. Many of these crops form vines or branches that extend outside of the container, some of which may need additional support from a fence or other structure.


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