Sprawling backyard vegetable gardens are a luxury not everyone can enjoy. Individuals living in apartments or condominiums, those with little or no yard space, and even those with physical limitations often find backyard vegetable gardening difficult or even impossible. The solution to this problem is growing vegetables in boxes. Different types of boxes are used for different vegetables and different types of gardens.
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Planter boxes purchased in garden supply stores are a ready option for those wishing for a quick-and-easy vegetable box. These planters come in different materials such as plastic, zinc or clay; and in different sizes to suit the vegetables you wish to grow in them. Box planters usually already have drainage holes added to them, but you may want to drill in a few more to increase drainage efficiency.
Window boxes sit on window sills or are attached to hang just outside of a window. This type of box may be purchased ready to go or custom built for your window and vegetable plant needs. They may be constructed from numerous materials, commonly moulded plastic or treated wood. Window box planters work for most any type of vegetables, including vining plants such as eggplants and cucumbers. Other choices for your window box include baby carrots, radishes, peppers or herbs.
No need to purchase garden boxes--try making a vegetable garden box from items found around your home. Plastic storage boxes only need a few holes drilled for drainage to make ideal vegetable boxes. For small plants or starter plants, poke a few holes into clean takeout boxes, milk cartons or juice boxes for single-season planters. These make good planters and a way to recycle at the same time. Fill the holes in a concrete building block and place vegetable seeds or starter plants inside to grow.
Raised garden beds are ideal for those who have physical limitations restricting them from bending to work in or tending a traditional garden with rakes and ploughs. These beds are often built from treated wood, and are raised anywhere from 6 to 18 inches above the ground. Build your raised box to suit the size garden you wish to grow. If you plan on making more than one raised garden box, leave a path between them so you can walk between the gardens to harvest and tend them.
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- University of Arizona Cooperative Extension: Vegetable Garden: Container Garden
- VeggieGardeningTips.com; Window Box Veggies: July 7, 2007; Kenny Point
- Gardening Know How; Raised Vegetable Gardens -- How to Make a Home Made Raised Garden; Nikki Phipps
- Disney.Go.com: Gardening Tips - Planting A Garden
- "Organic Crops in Pots"; Deborah Schneebeli-Morrell; 2009