Want to plant a vegetable garden, but are confined by the small apartment space or small garden space? Vertical vegetable gardening offers health benefits and increased self-sufficiency to urban dwellers.
If you really want to grow your own fresh vegetables, then there is a solution for you, plant a vertical vegetable garden right there in your small space. With vertical vegetable gardening, you can easily produce as much produce as the normal garden would and even more.
Vertical vegetable gardens are easily mistaken with living walls. Both living walls and vertical vegetable gardening can be geared towards producing vegetables and fruits but living walls are more focused on beauty than the production of food. These forms of gardening can be done either in your apartment or in your small backyard or sideyard garden.
Vertical vegetable gardening involves training vegetable plants to grow upwards or stacking containers upward. These gardens use structures designed specifically to contain an entire garden within a small, contained space.
With the proper frames and cross shelving setups, some trellis, and some string, you will find it’s not very difficult at all to train your plants to grow vertically.
DIY Urban Vertical Vegetable Gardens
There are pre-fabricated vertical gardening kits you can purchase that will remove the guess work in building constructing your setup, but that does not mean you cannot go the do-it-yourself route.
If you choose a DIY method, make certain that whatever structure you are using or building to support your vertical vegetable garden is strong enough to hold the materials, soil, water, and plants found in your garden as well as the vegetables you are about to produce. While you can find the specific information online as to the weights of the different elements in your new garden, we find that such kits can often save a lot of time – not only with setup, but they also prevent lost “growing” time that you may encounter with wilted plants that did not receive the proper amounts of water or soil.
While you can find the specific information online as to the weights of the different elements in your new garden, we find that such kits can often save a lot of time – not only with setup, but they also prevent lost “growing” time that you may encounter with wilted plants that did not receive the proper amounts of water or soil.
Indoor Urban Vertical Vegetable Gardens
Remember, you do not need to limit yourself only to outdoor vertical gardens. While maintaining a vegetable garden inside your apartment or other confined space can be a bit tricky, it’s not impossible and can be very rewarding.
Gardening indoors will allow you to plant vegetables that may not be fond of your region’s climate, giving you a better variety to choose from when planting. It has also been shown that live plants can positively affect the air quality in a smaller space.
While it will be necessary to ensure you have proper ventilation to prevent any possible odors, others have found that they can breathe better and are generally calmer because of the increased oxygen emitted by your plants.
If you decide to build your vertical vegetable garden indoors, spend time finding the perfect location, as your plants will need sunlight. If you are in an urban area where buildings block most of the natural light from your patio or windowsills, you will want to invest in some plant lamps to grow your plants and vegetables.
If you are interested in truly organic gardening, you’ll also want to research how you can apply composting procedures to the soil used in your vertical gardens. A proper drainage system is a necessity, as well as very good air circulation (whether indoors or out).
NASA scientists have been researching different vertical gardening methods, which means that the supplies and processes of how to grow vegetables and herbs vertically should continue to improve with the advancement of technology. While large grid systems and advanced hydroponic watering techniques may not offer feasible solutions for your space we can benefit from the concepts and the ideas they create and can scale them down to fit our own needs.
However, to start your garden, you will want to stick to some simple basics to ensure your success as you begin to learn how to work with your space and your climate restrictions. For starters, look at gardening peas, green beans, cucumber, squash, lima plants, and tomatoes, as these are great climbing plants by design. This doesn’t rule out other vegetables for vertical gardening, but they may be more difficult to start off with.
Also, make sure you have all the supplies needed before starting your garden. This is particularly important in regard to vertical supports for your plants, and seeds will germinate almost immediately and it would be best to not disturb the soil to add supports at a later date. You want to make sure that your designated vertical vegetable garden is not closely entwined with shrubs or other plants that may divert water away from your produce or cast shadows over their sunlight. After some time, these issues may not be of a primary concern, but they should be noted by all beginners looking to start their first vertical garden.
Vegetable and herb gardening has always been known to offer “green” ways to lower environmental footprint, but those opportunities had been limited by space and region.
Luckily, with the new trend of vertical vegetable gardening, those in urban environments can experience that same level of increased self-sufficiency as their produce their own, healthy, fresh grown produce.