If you live somewhere where you do not have your own outdoor space such as an independent living community, you might think you have to give up your gardening dreams. But that could not be further from the truth! With a little creativity, a warm window, and some growth lights, you can have your perfect garden right in the comfort of your home!
To get started, first decide what you would like to grow and how much (keep reading for some great ideas). Then, you will need a few pots with some drainage holes. When choosing your pots, keep in mind that some of the smaller plants like herbs can grow in shallow pots, but if you are planning to grow something like carrots, you will need a large, deep pot. To fill the pots, be sure to grab indoor potting soil because it is specifically designed for indoor vegetable gardens! You may also want a pair of gardening gloves, a trowel, and a small tarp to protect your floors.
Once you have your supplies, scope out your space for the sunniest window. Vegetables need around four to six hours of sunlight per day, and fruits need at least eight to 10 hours. If you find that none of the windows in your home get this much light, do not fret, just head to your local hardware store or online shop to order some growth lights. They can be relatively inexpensive, and they can speed up the growth process for your garden.
After you have your space properly lit, it is time for potting your plants. We recommend starting with sprouts rather than seeds because it is easier, and you can have produce sooner. Another thing to consider is watering. We recommend following the adage that "less is more." For herbs like sage, you might even choose to set up a humidifier that constantly runs to mimic an outdoor environment.
Our biggest tip with indoor vegetable gardening is to be patient. It could take several weeks or months before you can harvest your produce, but it will be well worth the wait! Keep reading for some of our favorite, and most successful, vegetable varieties for indoor gardening.
Growing your own herbs is a major step up from purchasing them from the local grocery store and a good first try at indoor gardening, especially if you are an inexperienced gardener. Herbs are relatively easy to grow, and they will make everything you eat taste much better. Select herbs even offer immune system support.
Lettuce and other greens
We all love a good salad, and the foundation for a good salad is perfectly crunchy lettuce. Lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, and kale are all possibilities for your indoor veggie garden. Some greens such as celery can even grow from the scraps of another piece of celery -- how cool is that? Just plant the stump root side down in a little indoor potting soil, and it will regrow!
Peppers and tomatoes
Peppers and tomatoes are slightly more advanced than the other veggies listed here, but you can do it! These plants need plenty of sunlight and larger pots for their root systems, as well as a cage or stake for them to climb as they grow. Smaller peppers (such as chili or shishitos) and dwarf tomato varieties are easier to grow in containers and taste just as delicious as their larger cousins.
Finally, carrots are another great option for indoor vegetable gardening. Carrots prefer a cooler climate, which makes them perfect for the indoors. Our biggest tip for the best carrots is to get a deep enough pot for them to grow because carrots are root vegetables that grow underground.
And if indoor gardening is not your thing, stop by the dining room at Country Club Village, where our master chef cooks with garden fresh seasonal vegetables for breakfast, lunch, and dinner!
To learn more about residency or to schedule a tour of Country Club Village, contact our friendly team today. Email Vicky Shuffield, community development director, at [email protected], or call 501-881-4951.