Tips for Apartment Gardening

Gardening has become a very popular hobby in the last several years for many reasons.  One of the biggest reasons is the fact that more and more studies are showing the harmful effects of eating food which has been treated with chemicals or altered with hormones or other unnatural products.  Growing your own food in a garden can be a healthy activity which is also quite enjoyable.  If, however, you live in an apartment it might seem impossible to be able to have a garden since you don’t have a yard where you can put it.  Fortunately, there are many ways you can start apartment gardening without any trouble.

The biggest problem to overcome with apartment gardening is the fact that there is just not as much room for a garden as there would be for someone with their own home.  Most apartment gardens will be placed on or around the balcony which is often very limited in space.  The best way to take advantage of as much of the area as possible is by using a combination of hanging baskets and pots to hold the plants.  By using both the ground area and the area above it is possible to fit in far more plants than you otherwise could. 

There are also devices designed specifically for gardening in small areas which will allow you to put pots in a tiered format where all of the plants will fit nicely and still get sufficient sunlight to remain healthy.  The important thing when considering this type of option is that you take into account the size the plant will be when fully grown.  It is impossible, for example, to put corn in this type of arrangement because the plants are simply too tall.  By planning ahead and arranging the plants for your apartment garden wisely it is possible to get dozens of healthy plants into your balcony area.

While there are some obvious difficulties associated with apartment gardening, there are also some advantages.  The biggest advantage is that when using pots and baskets for your plants it is possible to bring them inside when necessary.  This means you can begin your garden much earlier in the year because there is no worry of a frost killing the plants.  On nights when the weather is supposed to get too cold, simply bring the plants inside for the evening.  This extra growing time can often allow you to have two or even three harvests each year rather than just one with a traditional garden.  

Pat Mulford •