Container Gardening

I have a new passion!

I was asked to speak at a Garden Club in Atlanta on Square Foot Gardening.  I love square foot gardening and have used this technique for about 20 years.  I love the versatility and once again this attribute has served me well!

Let me explain…

Since the planting schedule is based on a grid, a 1’x 1′ square, I took that square and transferred it to a container.

Whatever plants I could fit in a 1′ x 1′ square, I planted in the container….

I’m calling this one the “salad bowl.”  I planted Chinese cabbage, Swiss Chard, Spinach, and Butter Crunch lettuce.  I did throw in a couple of Dianthus for color since this will be a demonstration pot.

I did put a little more in this bowl than a 1′ x 1′ square would hold because this bowl will constantly be picked.  As the leaves mature, they’ll be harvested thus eliminating volume.  As the greens become a little spindly, I’m hoping the Dianthus will hide that look.

I used a ceramic bowl I had in my potting shed.  It’s about 12-18″ across the top and about 6 – 8″ deep.

I put in the soil formula I use for the square foot beds.

I did another pot with a pepper plant, Swill chard, and edible pansies.  The Swiss Chard is a cool weather plant and the pepper, a warm weather plant.

Again, my thinking is that by the time the Swiss Chard is spent, the pepper will take up the extra space and the pansies will help to cover the transitioning.

I made a container with some herbs.  I followed the adage, “Thriller, Filler, Spiller.”

I put Rosemary in the center as the Thriller; I used the pansies as the Filler; and the Lemon Thyme as the Spiller.

I used the same soil combination as I did for the Salad Bowl: peat moss, vermiculite, and a mixture of different composts – mushroom, cow, and chicken.  It’s 1/3 of each: peat moss, vermiculite, and compost.   I mix it in a bucket or wheel barrow first, depending on how many pots or containers I’m making.

Start with the soil low in the pot and place in your plants.  Fill in with the soil after you like the arrangement and then water!

Be sure your containers have good drainage – no plant likes to have “wet feet”.

I had so much fun putting these containers together for my class and I have quite a few plants left over…

And I think I saw some really cool containers out in my potting shed…

I think I may have to clear my calendar for this afternoon!

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One Response to “Container Gardening”

  1. Turf San Diego Says:

    Thanks for the info… i’ll put it to good use 🙂

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