Small-Space Gardening Benefits & Tips
The ability to grow things, be they tasty, beautiful or both, is not limited those with a large yard or ample acreage! With sunlight and a bit of planning even a half foot of space -in a yard, on a window sill, or up a wall - can be “gardened".
Fit the most into containers or small patches of soil by:
- Using dwarf or “patio" varieties
- Growing Vertical with strings, stakes & trellis or with planters mounted vertically
- Layer plants in a shared space, i.e. basil at base of a tomato plant
Containers are perfect for gardening on a balcony, deck, patio or windowsill. Their close-at-hand nature and confined growing environment makes harvest, watering and feeding easier and can greatly reduce weeding compared to a large garden bed. You can also get extra green and crafty points for recycling household items into plant pots!
Container success tips:
- Use a lightweight potting mix, not garden soil, and a container with drainage
- Be sure containers are stabile & secure, especially on windy balconies
- Containers will need more frequent feed and watering than in ground gardens
Skinny lengths of soil along walls, fences, drives, walkways and property lines can help you gain garden space at ground level. Spaces near heat-retaining surfaces, such as brick walls or asphalt driveways, can allow you to grow things normally needing a warmer climate. Plants in narrow patches of soil can provide food, beauty and privacy and are easy to tend and harvest compared to broad garden expanses.
Skinny space success tips:
- Be sure your “borrowed" space won't have toxic runoff from lawn chemicals
- Use mulch and maintain a defined edge to keep weeds and lawn from invading
- A soaker hose saves your skinny garden from sharing with greedy grass roots if next to a lawn and keeps run-off to a minimum if next to a drive or walkway.