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How to Grow Vegetables on a Patio

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How to Grow Vegetables on a Patio

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Overview

Grow vegetables on your patio to enjoy the benefits of fresh and healthy produce. Despite the small space, a patio vegetable garden yields a large amount of produce. The key to a successful patio vegetable garden includes using the right sized planters, good quality potting soil and types of vegetables suited for container gardening. With the correct amounts of sunlight, water and fresh air, your vegetable garden will thrive and yield a healthy bounty at the end of the season.

Step 1

Arrange the containers over the patio before filling them with soil. Place them next to each other in a spot that receives plenty of sunlight, along with some afternoon shade. Depending on your budget and personal taste, use standard plastic planters or tubs, or self-watering Earth boxes and planters that contain a water reservoir at the base. Make sure the regular planters have adequate drainage holes in the bottom, or drill them if necessary.

Step 2

Fill each container with good quality potting mix until 2 inches below the rim. This type of potting mix contains vermiculite and peat, and is commercially available in local nurseries and garden supply centers. Improve fertility by adding one part compost to two parts potting mix.

Step 3

Dig holes in the potting mix with a stick or hand shovel, and lower the roots of vegetable seedlings into them. If planting seeds, follow label directions on each packet for appropriate depth and spacing. Label each planter and note the date of planting to help determine when to harvest.

Step 4

Water the planter to ensure the soil is evenly moist. For Earth boxes, pour water into the reservoir until the indicated line.

Step 5

Inspect the vegetables frequently to ensure they are disease and pest free. Water the soil everyday to prevent it from going dry, specially during the summer months. Support vegetables such as beans, peas, tomatoes and peppers with wooden stakes as they grow to ensure they remain upright. Spray mild insecticidal soapy solution over the plants to deter pests such as aphids and spider mites.

Tips and Warnings

  • Avoid dark-colored containers that absorb and retain the heat of the sun, thus damaging plant roots. Paint dark containers a lighter color prior to planting.

Things You'll Need

  • Containers
  • Potting mix
  • Compost
  • Stick
  • Vegetable seedlings
  • Watering can
  • Spray bottle
  • Insecticidal soapy solution

References

  • Texas A&M: Vegetable Gardening In Containers
  • West Virginia University Extension Service: Container Gardening
  • "Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades"; Steve Solomon; 1989
  • Earth Box: The Ultimate Gardening System
Keywords: grow vegetables, patio vegetable garden, patio garden

About this Author

Tanya Khan is a freelance author and consultant, having written hundreds of thousands of words for various online and print sources. She has an MBA in Marketing but her passion lies in giving her words wings.

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