Growing a Salad Bowl Container Garden
Lacking the space and/or energy for a traditional vegetable garden? Reconnect with that inner green thumb and consider container gardening, a concept readily adaptable to specific personal requirements, homescape conditions and, most importantly, one’s individual taste.
One of the easiest ways to kick-start a foray into container cropping is with the creation of a fresh salad planter, filled to the brim with a personally chosen combination of select salad greens, herbs and edible flowers. Garden centers are well-stocked with seasonal plant starts and seed varieties, as well as interesting pottery and containers in all shapes, sizes and colors.
Salad vegetables and annual flowers especially lend themselves to mixed container plantings, as their shallow fibrous roots allow for the possibility of fitting a fair number of plants into a relatively small space. The main consideration is that proper levels of water, sunlight and fertilization are consistently maintained.
Make sure the potting soil you choose is a blended mix (organic, if possible) suitable for containers AND that the pot selected provides adequate drainage. If, after your plants are in place, space allows for the addition of some vegetable seeds, consider a light shaking of companion, baby-sized varieties for added texture and interest.
WHAT TO GROW
The combinations are endless and limited only by the size of your container and the desires of your appetite. With consistent watering and applications of organic fertilizer (think Espoma brand Tomato-Tone) you should have a continuous and bountiful harvest throughout the season. Overwhelmed by the abundance of artisanal vegetable and herb varieties on the nursery market shelves? It might help to treat your shopping trip as a walk through a basic pizza menu, with the selected size container as your “pizza” base (small/medium/large/extra large) with desired “toppings” chosen from the following columns.*
*The plants listed are suggestions, so let your own imagination and taste buds be your guide. Bon appetit!