April showers bring May flowers and—if you’ve noticed the community gardens all around Boston—fruits and veggies too! Luckily, you don’t need to access a community garden to grow and eat your own food. All you need are a few containers and you can create your own container garden in your home.
In an urban city like Boston, container gardening allows you and your kids to grow your own fruits, veggies, and herbs, regardless of how much space you have at home. Gardening is a great way to teach kids about food and even convince them to eat more vegetables. Many experts have said that kids feel ownership over the food if they grow it themselves.
To help you get started, we compiled a list of container gardening tips and tricks:
Collecting your containers
- Start collecting containers early!
- Use containers that are at least 12 inches deep and 10-12 inches wide. We recommend reusing old buckets or buying cheap gardening pots from your local thrift store. But in reality, anything can be used to grow plants – we’ve seen people use juice boxes, clamshells, and even old shoes!
- Create small holes at the bottom so water can drain out
- Avoid dark colored containers because they absorb sunlight which dries out the soil
- Personalize containers by letting your kids paint or decorate the outside!
Selecting the seeds
- Involve your kids in seed selection – plant fruits and vegetables your kids like to eat!
- Pick plants that grow easily and quickly to keep your kids engaged. Peas, potatoes, tomatoes, herbs, and strawberries are great options.
- Think about the herbs you and your kids like to use at home to add flavor to your dishes. You can buy seeds, or get small herb plants at gardening and grocery stores.
Now all you need is container gardening soil and you’re ready to go…and grow! Happy planting!
(Photo courtesy of The Micro Gardener)