How to Grow Vegetables In-Home


Growing your own vegetables provides fresh vegetables whenever you want them. You do not need a yard, patio or balcony to make a vegetable garden--grow them inside your home or apartment. Known as container vegetable gardening, this type of gardening can be used for growing a number of vegetables. Growing vegetables indoors calls for the right environment (location, light and soil), plus basic care on a regular schedule.

Step 1

Place your garden in a location that provides at least six to eight hours of full sun for warm-season vegetables such as squash, tomatoes, eggplant and peppers. Cool-season vegetables, like spinach, lettuce and Asian greens, require from three to five hours of full sun, according to the University of Maryland. The amount of space available may limit the number (or size) of containers, and vegetables you can grow.

Step 2

Place the containers in the locations selected for growing vegetables, especially if you use large containers. Utilize wheels or caddies on large containers, if you will ever need to move them. Put a drainage pan under each of the vegetable containers to catch excess water, but remember to empty it after watering.

Step 3

Cover the drainage hole with wire mesh (coffee filter or paper towels) to prevent the growing medium from leaking out. Fill the containers with a growing medium such as high-quality potting soil, "soilless" potting mixes or compost. According to University of Arizona, you can use a mixture of one-part builder's sand, one part peat moss, one part garden loam, plus a time-release fertilizer, such as 14-14-14 (as directed).

Step 4

Water the vegetables after planting, until you see water coming from the bottom. Use extreme caution when watering newly planted seeds, or use a spray bottle to mist the growing medium until damp. Check vegetable containers every day and supply water when the soil is dry. Maintain moist soil, but not waterlogged conditions. Smaller containers and clay pots will dry quicker, and bigger, more developed vegetables require more water than seedlings or small plants.

Step 5

Apply a water-soluble fertilizer, like 10-10-10 or 5-10-10, as directed on label, depending on size of container. Reapply fertilizer once or twice a month (half-strength), during the growing season for each vegetable.

Step 6

Add a layer of mulch in the vegetable containers to retain moist soil longer. Keep the mulch away from the stems of the vegetable plants. Allow the vegetables to mature on the plants before harvesting.

Things You'll Need

  • Containers
  • Mesh
  • Drainage pans
  • Growing medium
  • Hand trowel
  • Water
  • Fertilizers
  • Mulch (optional)


  • North Carolina University: Container Vegetable Gardening
  • University of Maryland: Container Vegetable Gardening
  • University of Arizona: Vegetable Garden: Container Garden

Who Can Help

  • Virginia Tech: Vegetable Gardening in Containers
  • Oregon State University: Extension Service Garden Hints
  • Woman's Day: Plant an Indoor Vegetable Garden
Keywords: grow vegetables inside, container vegetable gardening, home vegetable garden

About this Author

Diane Dilov-Schultheis has been writing professionally since 2000. She is a food and travel writer who also specializes in gaming, satellites, RV repair, gardening, finances and electronics. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and has been published on Yahoo!, the Travel Channel and Intel.