Limited outdoor space or a short warm season can be a gardening challenge. Indoor gardening is a great way to bring a little of the outdoors into your home and increases your growing potential. Because of artificial heating and cooling, modern homes are often much drier than most plants prefer. A humidifier or plant mister can increase water content in the air.
Windowsill Herb Garden
You can grow an indoor herb garden on a sunny windowsill. Herbs are quick and easy to grow and bring a lot of flavor to home cooking. Choose a windowsill location that provides at least six hours of sunlight or supplement the light with a fluorescent bulb if natural light is inadequate. Use pots with drainage holes set into trays and plant herbs in a commercial potting mix. Water the herbs when the top of the soil starts to feel dry and fertilize once per month with a water soluble garden fertilizer. Good herbs for indoor gardening include: basil, rosemary, sage, mint, chives, oregano and thyme. Consider starting with just a couple plants and increase your indoor herb garden as you gain experience.
Homegrown mushroom kits are available through garden and nursery catalogs. Different types of mushrooms sold for home growing include shiitake, pearl oyster mushrooms, blue and pink oyster mushrooms. Use homegrown mushrooms for various recipes and enjoy watching them grow. Unlike indoor herbs and many houseplants, mushrooms generally need a shady location (a north-facing window). Growing indoor mushrooms is a fun way to introduce children to gardening, just be sure to stress the importance of never eating wild mushrooms growing outdoors.
Create a Garden Room
An indoor location receiving several hours of bright natural light is a perfect spot to create an indoor garden oasis. Choose an indoor palm tree like the parlor palm (Chamaedorea elegans) or a ficus tree and use plant stands for containing various houseplants. Grouping several plants together creates a garden feel and having many plants in one location makes it easier to monitor their care. Create a comfortable sitting area and consider adding a small bubbling fountain to enhance the outdoor feel of the room.