Vegetable Container Gardening

Growing Vegetables in Containers

I think it’s fair to say that most people think that containers or container gardening is for flowers only, however I am here to say that indeed it is not! In fact a whole array of vegetables can be grown in containers, the only consideration being the size or depth of container – You shouldn’t try and grow carrots in a shallow tray for instance 🙂

This video is an excellent introduction to container gardening, even though the container he is using is fairly large, and certainly not movable once it is filled with soil.

The watering system he has set up is particularly informative, and could in fact be utilised in a raised bed gardening system to great effect. In fact the tubular plastic – which is easily bought at any diy merchants (look under plumbing), can also be used to form a frame upon which you can hang bird netting, or even polythene if you want to form a cold frame or mini-greenhouseOpens in a new tab. effect – particularly useful if you want to grow more exotic species in colder climates.

What I would venture to say is just to emphasise what he already mentions regarding clear containers. If for instance you were to grow potatoes in a clear container such as this, then the tubers would most likely go green with the sunlight – making then inedible. Other root vegetables would suffer similar fates. Best avoid the risk and choose black planters. Another advantage of a black planter is that it absorbs the warmth of the sun, encouraging growth – watch out for the soil drying out though!

container gardening books
Growing vegetables in containers is possible even in a limited space.

Growing In Containers

On the subject of soil…Be careful how much actual soil or dirt you add to your planter, as it tends to form a solid mass if not done correctly. A good mixture of organic or fibrous material, including well-rotted manure is the best medium for growing in containers – not matter what the volume.

Pots, old tyres and even plastic guttering can all be grown in containers, just be sure that each vegetable or indeed herb, has sufficient room to grow to it’s full potential. Tomato plants for instance, need at least a 2 gallon container in order for the root system to form properly and produce good tomatoes. Any surface growing vegetable such as squash or cucumber for instance, can be grown in a shallow container, whereas carrots and other root vegetables have to be grown in a deeper container in order to form properly – it’s not rocket science 🙂

The real beauty of container gardening is simply the fact that even if you do not have the luxury of a large plot, or even a raised bed garden, then you can still grow vegetables in containersOpens in a new tab. if you have a sunny patio, or even just a deep window-sill. Container planting and growing veg in containers allows everyone to indulge in a bit of  DIY food production!carrots in planter


Best Selling author of several no-dig gardening books, James has over 40 years of gardening knowledge and experience to share with like-minded gardening enthusiasts.

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