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Potting

8 Best Vegetables to Grow in Containers

By Park Seed
Photographs courtesy of Park Seed

Container gardening is perfect for sprucing up small spaces and keeping your favorite greens just steps away from your kitchen. It's easy, fun, and totally doable—no matter your gardening experience. We’re sharing top tips on picking the best veggies and containers, along with how to water and deal with pests.

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Vegetable Varieties for Container Gardening

Tomatoes: Opt for determinate varieties, which are bushy and self-limiting in size, making them ideal for containers. For example, Patio Choice Yellow is a compact variety that is perfect for small spaces, including hanging baskets.

Cucumbers: Semi-bush varieties like Bush Champion are great for containers because they take up less space but still produce a plentiful crop.

Eggplants: Choose compact varieties such as Patio Baby, which produces small, manageable fruits perfect for container living.

Carrots and Radishes: Both can thrive in containers. Shorter carrot varieties such as Parisian or Little Finger, or radishes like Cherry Belle, are ideal as they do not require deep soil to develop.

Peppers and Chilis: Smaller varieties, or those labeled as 'patio', are excellent for container gardens. For instance, Mini Bell peppers or Jalapeño are both suitable choices.

Leafy Greens: Lettuces, kale, and arugula are fantastic for containers. They require less space and can be harvested continuously.

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Caring for Container Vegetables

Watering: Containers dry out faster than garden soil, especially in warm weather or windy conditions. Check moisture levels daily and water accordingly. Use self-watering pots to reduce the frequency of watering.

Nutrition: Regular feeding is crucial as potting mix nutrients are quickly depleted. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every two weeks to encourage growth.

Sunlight: Most vegetables require 6-8 hours of direct sunlight daily. If your space doesn't meet this requirement, consider growing leafy greens or herbs which can tolerate some shade.

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Benefits of Container Gardening

Accessibility: Raising containers to a comfortable height reduces the need for bending and stooping, making gardening more accessible to everyone, including those with mobility issues.

Weed Management: Fewer weeds appear in containers, reducing maintenance and competition for nutrients.

Pest Control: Containers can be moved to manage sun exposure and avoid pests. Moreover, healthy container plants are less prone to diseases, as many soil-borne pathogens are avoided with potting mix.

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Design and Aesthetics

Companion Planting: Integrate flowers or herbs into vegetable containers to enhance beauty and deter pests. Marigolds, for example, can repel certain insect pests while adding a splash of color.

Container Choices: Choose containers that complement your outdoor decor while being functional. Ensure they have adequate drainage to prevent root rot.

For more vegetable-growing information, visit parkseed.com.


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