Introduction to container gardening
Container gardening is currently on the rise and more people are adapting to it because it is the simplest method of gardening that does not necessarily need a piece of land because with a spacious balcony, corridor or backyard garden you are all set. There is no expertise needed but that does not mean that you shouldn’t ask for a little help if you need to especially if you’ve never done gardening before and you would like to get all the facts right. The markets are flooded with various types of gardening containers, with varying sizes, shapes, colors, material and even prices. It all depends with the type of container you may feel will work well for you. Some containers such as smart pots are light and breathable while others such as those made from clay or ceramic are a bit heavy.
Choosing a container for gardening purposes is surrounded by a number of factors which if considered they play a big role in determining the growth success of your plant. A plant has a number of requirements that it needs so that it may thrive and if the said requirements or factors are not met then the chances of the plant thriving are slim. We are going to look at some of the factors that should be put into consideration when purchasing containers for gardening purposes so that you can make an informed decision while choosing one.
Choosing a gardening container
These are some of the important considerations you should have in place when choosing a gardening container for your gardening purposes:
- Drainage: as much as water is an important aspect of plant growth, too much of it can end up damaging the plant before it reaches its maturity. Various containers come with different designs on how they handle drainage with smart pots for example having a breathable fabric that controls the drainage levels of the plant such that it is not drowned. A reliable gardening container should therefore have adequate or reliable drainage so that the water may be able to escape during watering period.
- Weight: different types of gardening containers come with different materials and sizes which are a factor that determines how heavy they can be. For instance, ceramic and clay containers cannot weight the same with plastic or cloth containers. While light weight containers may seem ideal because of their light nature and the ability to carry them around easily, they may not last if they are put in a place where wind can blow them easily and damage them. You should therefore be weight minded when it comes to choosing a gardening container with the right weight that will not be hard for you to handle and not prone to windy situations at the same time.
- Porousness of the container: this is another factor that cannot go unnoticed and this is because moisture and air are important to a plant as is water and soil. You should therefore choose gardening containers whose material is porous enough to allow air and moisture in for the plant to thrive by preventing the rotting of the roots. Such materials can be made of timber, paper pulp or any other porous material.
- Cost and time: this is in sense that you can use a planting container for a long period before it gets to a point of being replaced. Some containers can last years and that means after a single use all you have to do is clean it and store it to use it the next time you will be planting something. That beats the need of having to purchase a new one every other time you may need one.
- Maintenance: there are pots or gardening containers such as smart pots which require little maintenance time and effort. It all depends with the material that you choose for the containers with those made of wood also requiring little effort in maintenance. Any kind of maintenance should however not include any chemicals especially if the kind of plants being planted on them is food.
- Food safety: you should go for containers which are not likely to release any kind of harmful particles to the soil which may poison the plant which in this case may be a food plant. Ensure that the material is friendly and not likely toxic to the plant and soil.
- Durability: we all want to purchase something that is to serve us years in years out without having the worry of replacing them due to wear and tear the sooner we purchase them. The same case applies to the gardening containers, pick a material that will last you years and that will also count on how you will maintain the container throughout the plant growth or gardening period.
Planting and watering the containerized plants
When it comes to containers gardening, it is pretty much like gardening on the real land only that this time it is on a different platform. Planting and watering go hand in hand for the plant in question to thrive. Planting and watering should be carried out well in the following steps:
- Ensuring that the plant being transferred to the container is at the same level it was during its removal from the nursery bed.
- The plants roots should be covered by soil to prevent them from drying out. The plant should be watered immediately so that it can settle in the soil firmly. There should be no holes whatsoever and should there be any they should be covered with potting soil.
- Watering is essential for any plant as it comes and for that reason the soil surrounding the plant should have moisture but again that depends with the kind of plant in question because plants vary with their needed levels of water.
- Watering should be carried out efficiently depending on the container type without overwatering the plant because this can contribute to the rotting of roots.