I love gardening, and I have grown many gardens over the years. However, right now, we live in an apartment. We have zero yard space, and a patio that is shaded for most of the day. Growing our own vegetables is a challenge in an apartment, but it can be done.
Tips for Gardening in a Small Spaces
We grow all of our vegetables in containers. We obviously won’t be able to support ourselves completely on the produce we grow, but we can take advantage of organic gardening techniques on a small scale.
This is what we do to maximize our growing space:
Look for patio plants: Believe it or not, we were able to find plants specifically designed for patios this year. Our tomato plants are designated “patio tomatoes.” We have several small tomatoes growing on our vines, and hopefully we will see more soon!
Maximize sun exposure: We have partial sun at best on our patio. To maximize the sun exposure that our plants receive, we installed window boxes. The boxes stick out from beyond our patio ceiling and get more sun that way. The rest of our plants are placed as close to the edge of the patio as possible to maximize their sun exposure as well.
Choose small plants: The largest plants we have growing outdoors are our two tomato plants. Other than that, we have oregano, basil, cilantro, carrots, and mint. In the past, we have grown peppers with some success.
Keep expectations low: One year, we grew a total of two tomatoes all season. Our tomato plant simply did not have enough sun that year. However, those were the two best tomatoes that I have ever eaten. We put them in a salad and they were delicious. Even though we only grew two that year, it was two tomatoes that we didn’t have to buy from the store. If you keep your expectations low, you’ll be happy with whatever you get!
Experiment: Most vegetables and fruit do require full sun, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try! Right now, our risky crop is carrots. So far, they are doing great! We also have some cherry seeds germinating in our fridge that we hope to sprout one day.
The Benefits of Patio Container Gardening
Any form of gardening is beneficial. Not only do you get delicious fruits and vegetables with the maximum nutritional value, you also have the fun of working in the dirt. My daughter loves working in the dirt with us, and each day we see our plants grow is exciting. You shouldn’t let a small space deter you from trying your hand at gardening.
Additional Container Gardening Resources
- Herb Gardening Container Style
- Dwarf Fruit Trees for Small-Space Gardens
- Vertical Vegetable Gardening: A Living Free Guide (Living Free Guides)
Do you have a small space? How do you garden in a limited area?