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WHAT IS CONTAINER GARDENING?




  • Hafiz Muhammad Bilal, Rabbia Zulfiqar, Rohoma Tahir

    Department of Horticulture

    University of Sargodha

     

    A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness, it teaches industry and thrift, above all it teaches entire trust.

    Gardening is about enjoying the smell of things growing in the soil, getting dirty without feeling guilty and generally taking the time to soak up a little peace and serenity.

    Container gardening is a practice of growing plants in container instead of planting them in a ground. Container gardening includes planting edible as well as nonedible plants. The container can be anything that can be enclosed, small and usually portable such as box, tub, basket, tin, hanging basket or barrel. In container gardening first step is to get an idea, is this going to a vegetable garden? An herb garden? or a flower garden? Almost all flowers and vegetables need 6 hours and full sun each day. Spend a day in your chosen spot and watch how the sun moves across the space. In your container garden it is necessary to look at the spot where you plan to locate container and to also look what are condition there? Does your balcony get full shade? Those plants that really need moisture or dry out quickly will prabibly not survive  the extra air movement causing more water to evaporate from the soil so don’t choose your plant try to squeeze them into less than ideal condition. Most important to look at the condition first, and discover which plant best fit them. The next important step is to learn what type of soil each plant need you can grow several different plants in one container but be sure they complement each other. For example potatoes, tomatoes, peppers can be grown in the same pot and will drain out soil of nutrient more quickly while carrots need a pot deep enough to accommodate the fully grown plant  with space. Potatoes and garlic need different size pots, Containers of herbs need other sizes. In container gardening it’s true that pots gives advantages, pots are made up of terracotta but now more commonly plastic and window boxes are mostly seen. Small pots are known as flower pots.  In some cases this method of growing is useful for ornamental purposes and it is useful in the areas where the soil or climate is unsuitable for plant. Using a container is generally useful for houseplant.

    There are many container for growing vegetable and herbs. Container for vegetable plant must be in general:

    1: Be large enough to support the plant and its root system, once fully grown trellis or support can be added.

    2: Hold an adequate amount of soil.

    3: Have good drainage.

    4: Have not been exposed to toxic element.

    In container gardening further types are used i.e Chives, fennel, bay laurel, oregano, and rosemary perform well in container. Mint should always be grown in containers and it becomes invasive in traditional garden.

    There are many advantages of container gardening some of them are,

    Basically container gardening is a way to grow your own vegetable and herb and make your own garden healthy and attractive.  You can grow those plants which are not suitable to grow in garden soil. Growing plants in container makes gardening accessible for any one including children elder etc. No weeding occur. No need of heavy equipment and gardening tools it saves money with less maintenance. You can easily vary your colour scheme. You can rearrange plants according to your personal taste. Portable meals on wheels suitable for renters, edible garden in pots  can move house with you. Less disease problem attack. Fertilizing is easier when they confined to a small area. Less time and labour saving is a great benefit of container gardening. Less competition with wild life and thieving from hungry animals and birds. Well designed container plants at home entrance can add value and make the home more welcoming Indoor gardening improve  indoor air quality, health well being with colour, fragrance, food and ornamentals plants. Decorative pots can act as focal point in home or gardens. Wide variety of seasonal food crops can grown successfully in container including long lasting fruits trees. Dwarf fruits trees can be grown in container and are suited for small space garden. Soil in pots warm up faster than soil in ground so earlier harvest of some vegetable crop is possible. Fresh herbs or salad vegetabls can grown in pots means less trips in car or public transport to shop or market place. Easier to control impact of weather , micro climate sun and shade. Enables garden to grow on all floor apartment of block and high rise building.  Indoor plants make us feel good they clean indoor air dramatically.

     

    Container garden are great for begginers. If a plant in a container get diseased like fungus then it is likely to spread on all other plants so it is easier to treat plants in container for pest. Container gardening make it easier to save seeds and can be used to create future plants. Indoor container gardens are wonderful in addition to any room interior design. Container gardening are extremely kid friendly to spend time together as a family or introduce the hobby to your little ones. There are some nice sign i.e  I like gardening because it is a place  where i find myself when i need to  loose  myself. The loves of gardening is seed  once sown that never dies. Gardening is a work of heart. To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow. In my garden there is a large place for sentiment my garden of flowers is also my garden of thoughts and dreams, the thoughts to grow as freely as flowers and the dreams are as beautiful. One of the important saying that he who plants garden plants happiness. As there are lots of benefits of container gardening similarly on the other hand there are some disadvantages that should also be known. It limits the size of your growing space to the size of your container. Small scale garden  also mean more frequent upkeep because soil is limited to size of container so it is important to remember that when planting in a container  be sure that size of plant complements  the size of container.

     

    Here are some tips  to maintaining your container garden i.e Firstly to select the pot because more plants are not fussy  about the type of pot in which they are grown they need enough space to spread their roots and good drainage holes to allow excess of water to drain.  Pots come in a variety of materials such as terracotta, wood plastic. All of them work equally. Secondly tip to choose the right soil always fill up your container  with good quality soil because when it dry hardens in the soil. Quality potting soil includes compost, perlite, vermiculite etc. Pick the healthy plant so that you get benefit most peoples prefer to grow flowers, vegetables, herb for their  patio, porch etc. Strawberries and lettuce are good in taste and these are great companion for sun loving annual and perennial flowers. Next tips to know about exact match of light condition for example if you are selecting plant that you should be aware that whether it grow best in sun or shade.  Always select the variety that complement each other in color and leave form. Container plants require more watering than those growing directly in garden.  Water whenever you feels the soil surface  gets dry   to touch this  is specially important for hanging basket  that dry out faster  because  they are buffeted by the wind. To keep flowers and vegetables in top form you must need fertilizing regularly flowers and vegetables are heavy feeders and will thrive with an extra dose of plant food. Faded blooms should also be removed and that process will be called as dead heading. It encourage new crop of flower to form. Next tip is to replace the plants as some annual and perennial begins to look tired by late summer so instead of revive them carefully remove plant from pot and pop in one of two replacement to give your container a second life. Most important tip is to clean up before winter once your annual and vegetable died toss (throw) them on compost pile and empty your container.  If you want to save your perennial or roses you have growing in container plant them directly in garden now.

    About Saad Ur Rehman Malik

    My name's Saad ur Rehman. I graduated Bachelor of Science in Agriculture major in Agronomy. I am editor at Agrihunt and CEO at Hum Pakistan web portal, President at Al Rehman Rural Development Organization, Secretary Information at Society for Human Rights and working as Coordinator of E-Bahawalpur. My agriculture coursework and journalism background helps me that how to communicate about issues that affect farmer's everyday lives.

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