Container gardening is a popular option for those with limited outdoor space. Containers can be placed on a porch or balcony, making them ideal for apartments. You can also keep potted plants indoors year-round or in the colder months. Planting your plants in containers increases the mobility and versatility of your garden space.
Select an area for your containers and choose plants accordingly. Examine the packaging of each plant to determine its needs in regards to light and temperature. If your only available space is indoors, select plants that will thrive in these conditions. If your containers will be placed outside, make note of how much sunlight is available in the selected area, and choose plants that are appropriate to the available conditions.
Choose containers that have drainage holes in the bottom. This is essential to help prevent over-watering and root rot. If your containers will be placed indoors, set a tray or plate beneath them to catch the overflow. You may need to elevate outdoor containers on a small stand if they are located on concrete or a similar hard surface that will inhibit draining.
Fill your containers with potting soil or a similar sandy soil. Avoid garden soil with clay in it. In a container, clay will hold extra water when wet and prevent the roots from receiving enough air.
Plant your plants according to their specifications in the prepared containers. Water immediately after planting.
Check the water level of indoor containers once every day or two, and check outdoor containers once or twice a day, especially in hot sunny weather. Water as needed.
Fertilize your potted plants once every two to three months. Be careful not to provide too much fertilizer. In a large garden, the fertilizer can spread out over a great distance, seeping deep into the soil. In a container, there is limited soil available, and it is easier to over-fertilize plants.