Whether you have a big garden or a small urban environment, you can still start gardening and growing your own produce. Here's how.
Spring is just around the corner and it’s a great time to start thinking about gardening. According to a Mental Health Journal report, gardening can help reduce stress and improve mood.
There is even evidence that it can reduce the symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Fortunately, you don’t need a lot of land or tools to start. It is possible to enjoy small-scale gardening out of your kitchen.
What is Windowsill Gardening?
Windowsill gardening is a cute name for a fun hobby that involves growing plants in a windowsill. These plants can be inside or hanging outside in a window box.
It is an amazing way to grow your own herbs or vegetables without needing a large outdoor garden.
Perfect for smaller homes like apartments or for a more laid-back gardening experience.
Despite the name, it doesn’t have to be contained to the windowsill alone.
How to Get Started?
The one downside to windowsill gardening is that you can’t go out and spontaneously shop for seeds, pots and soil.
Since the area you are working with will be limited, careful planning is needed to calculate what can fit in your indoor garden. Another important factor to consider is sunlight.
You will need to pick a spot with at least five hours of direct sunlight per day.
Most plants will start growing without sufficient sunlight at first. Unless you want to end up guilty of a plant massacre, you’ll need to make sure you pick the perfect spot.
Once you confirm the location of your garden, you need to consider pots.
Gardening Meets DIY
It is popular to use recycled items from around your kitchen to make your windowsill garden extra adorable.
Cans are a popular choice because you can collect a bunch in the same size or style for a uniform look. They can be decorated and labelled or left as they are based on preference.
Of course, you can also measure the space and shop for some nice pots too.
When picking out pots, make sure not to go smaller than 15cm (six inches) in diameter.
Depending on the herbs or plants you wish to grow, you may need larger containers. Of course, you also need to buy some soil.
Make sure you get some meant for growing edible plants to avoid any pesticides or other chemicals that may otherwise be included.
What Plants to Grow?
The most popular option for windowsill gardens is herbs. These are known to be hardy in small spaces and don’t require as much sunlight as most vegetables.
Basil, cilantro, dill, oregano, rosemary, sage and thyme are the most popular. Leafy greens such as lettuce, kale, chard and arugula are also great options.
Under the perfect conditions, you can even grow tomatoes, chillies, beans, peas, radishes and carrots. Each of these has a special requirement.
Carrots need deeper pots and a lot of water. Tomatoes and chillies peppers both need a lot of sunshine, although the peppers also have the extra requirement of warmth. When it comes to beans and peas, make sure to get a dwarf variety that won’t need any support.
Finally, for that extra pop of colour, consider adding some edible flowers to your windowsill garden. Lavender is a great option because it is easy to grow and smells amazing.
Chamomile is another possibility. Many non-edible flowers can also find a home in your kitchen window and fill your home with delicious scents.
Regrow Supermarket Bought Food
Another option that requires even less work than buying and planting seeds is taking an extra look at your food waste. If you cut the leaves of celery off the root, it can be replanted in soil and it will grow new stalks.
Onions and carrots can both be chopped in a way that allows you to eat the vegetable and replant the stub. This won’t regrow a new fruit, but the spurting greens are great in various recipes.
Even pineapple can be regrown from the stem, but this is a longer project that requires a bit of a green thumb. Finally, avocados are a popular food to regrow from the seed.
Simply remove the seed without damaging it, add some toothpicks to it half-submerged in water. With some TLC you’ll soon have a cute little avocado plant. But it’ll be years before it yields a guacamole-worthy harvest.
A windowsill garden is a fun and versatile way to bring life into your home. Gardening is great for stress reduction and it can be wonderful to experience growing your own food.
The options are endless. Plant herbs, veggies, plants or even regrow your favourite store-bought produce!
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