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Veg In Containers?

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Does anyone grow vegetables in containers?

I've been using containers to grow my veg for the past two years and have had great success.

I have found that you can grow most things in containers. I have grown, peas, beans, salad crops, potatoes, sweetcorn, tomatoes etc.

I like to try new things, so i'm going to have a go at aubergines this year.

I'd love to hear about your successes!

Jo.

  • Views: 1225
  • Replies: 33
  • Posted: Fri. 27th February 2009 19:37

Crops in pots

Reply from Nicola

Hi Jo,

This should be very popular this year. It is so great that you are doing this. I think you can offer a lot to others who might be trying for the first time. Do you have any general advice? Can you publish some photos of your success here in our forum? I'd love to see them and to know what combinations you used.

I believe Georgie is one member who knows a lot about this too, as she talks about it in her profile. She talks about "My garden is small but I manage to grow a variety of fruits, salads and herbs in pots." Click here for Georgie's garden
For those just starting out, Plant for Life have also given us an article talking about how to get started with these types of project.
Crops in Pots
I imagine as the year heats up, you find many others who will be trying this for the first time and could use your advice!

All the best, Nicola

  • Posted: Sat. 28th February 2009 10:33

Crops in Pots

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Nicola,

The biggest piece of advice I could give when growing veg in containers is to water well! Containers dry out much quicker than the ground does and plants do suffer if they don't have sufficient water.

I would also advise to give anything a go. When I started container gardening I never envisaged growing sweetcorn, however, I thought I would give it a go. For the past two years I have planted up six containers, two plants into one container, slightly larger than an average bucket and I have had a great harvest. Each plant produces, on average, two cobs, and until you have tasted your own sweetcorn you haven't lived! Apparently, after sweetcorn is picked the sugars turn rapidly into starch so the faster it is cooked after harvesting, the sweeter it is. Therefore, by growing your own, you can have a pan of boiling water on the go whilst you are harvesting, yum!

I also decided to have a go at growing runner beans in containers. I planted up three containers, again the containers were slightly larger than an average bucket, and planted three plants in each container. In each container I placed a cane and then tied the three canes at the top to make a wigwam. The plants romped up the canes and again I got a huge crop. If you keep picking them regularly the plants produce more.

Alot of the seed suppliers advertise seeds especially for growing in containers. I thought I would give one of these a go and bought some Hestia runner beans. Yes, they were ideal for a container as they didn't grow to the heights which usual varieties do, however, you don't get half the crop. I haven't tried any of the other veg which are recommended for containers, but based on my own experience I would say get the variety you fancy and give them a go.

Unfortunately, I haven't taken any photos of my veg, however, if anyone is interested in seeing this years crops I will gladly dust off the camera and post some pics. Let me know!!!

Jo.

  • Posted: Sat. 28th February 2009 21:06

veg in containers

Reply from Lynn Franklin

I'm hoping to start veg container gardening this year, I got rid of my small veg plot as it was too shady, so containers on the patio will probably work better. I'm going to be interested to see what successes everyone has

  • Posted: Thu. 5th March 2009 17:24

Veg In Containers

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Lynn,

So nice to hear that someone else on the forum will be growing veg in containers this year. It will be good to compare results.

What are you planning to grow?

Jo.

  • Posted: Thu. 5th March 2009 18:30

Veg in containers

Reply from Lorna Hazeltine

I have grown runner beans in containers and have been quite happy with the results, this year I will also be growing potatoes in containers. I agree that it is important to keep the containers well watered.

  • Posted: Thu. 5th March 2009 20:06

Veg in containers

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Lorna,

I've had good results with runner beans in containers too. I won't be growing them this year though as to be honest, I'm not over keen on them.

I will be growing potatoes this year too as I have done for the past two years.

Jo.

  • Posted: Fri. 6th March 2009 10:18

Veg in containers

Reply from Lorna Hazeltine

Hi Joanne. Although I live on my own 3 of my 4 children love runner beans so nothing goes to waste!! I have grown Enorma for the past 2 years. I did grow Fergie one year and they were excellent but haven't managed to get any since. Does anybody know of a supplier?

  • Posted: Fri. 6th March 2009 14:52

Runner Bean 'Fergie'

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Lorna,

I've just googled for suppliers but nothing has come up. They must be quite hard to find. I think your best bet would be to post an advertisement asking if anyone has any to spare. In these situations gardeners are usually only too willing to help out.

If you do manage to get any, you can then save your own seed ready for sowing the following year.

Jo.

  • Posted: Fri. 6th March 2009 18:15

veg in containers

Reply from Lynn Franklin

I will be growing runner beans and tomatoes definately, also salads and sweet peppers, I might try a few carrots too, and I will be doing the potatoes in the old compost bags

  • Posted: Fri. 6th March 2009 20:28

Veg in containers

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Lynn,

I will be growing very similar things to you.

I am definitely growing tomatoes, salads, sweet peppers and potatoes, but I'm giving the runner beans a miss this year. I'm also definitely growing sweetcorn and spring onions.

I can't make my mind up about carrots yet. I failed with carrots two years ago, and last year they were ok but not fantastic. I might give them another go if I have the space.

Jo.

  • Posted: Sat. 7th March 2009 08:53

veg in containers

Reply from Lorna Hazeltine

Hi Lynn. Hope you have more success with carrots than I did last year!! The only carrots I got were about 1inch long, little dumpy things, I am tempted to try again as I love raw carrots, can't stand them cooked! I am also going to try radish, lettuce, spring onions and lettuce in containers. BTW my Maris Bard are chitting nicely, do I leave all the shoots (don't know proper name) on each seed potato or do I remove some, help please. My tomatoes and cucumbers will be grown in the grenhouse.
Lorna

  • Posted: Sat. 7th March 2009 11:27

potatoes

Reply from Lorna Hazeltine

Any help on this question please?
BTW my Maris Bard are chitting nicely, do I leave all the shoots (don't know proper name) on each seed potato or do I remove some, help please.

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 10:30

Reducing the number of chits

Reply from Georgie

Hi Lorna

As you know I've never grown potoatoes before. However, I've read that there is no need to rub off the chits of first earlies or indeed any potatoes unless you are looking for particularly large potatoes in which case you can reduce the number of chits/shoots to three per seed potato.

Georgie

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 10:46

Potatoes

Reply from Lorna Hazeltine

Thanks Georgie, in that case I will leave the seed pots alone and let them do their own thing.
Lorna

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 12:40

Potatoes

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Lorna,

I'm with Georgie on this one. I have read about people reducing the shoots on seed potatoes, however, I never have.

I'll be planting all my seed potatoes up, grateful for any shoots that they have decided to sprout :-).

Jo.

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 22:34

Oops sorry!

Reply from Georgie

Lynn

I've just posted that I am growing my potoatoes in an old compost sack having completely missed your post! Still, great minds think alike eh? :D

To make up for this slip here is a list of some of the edibles I'll be growing in containers this year, excluding herbs:

Tomatoes, Watercress, Cucumber, Physallis, Chillies, Passion Fruit, Strawberries, Peas, Courgette, Borlotti Beans, Spring Onions, Carrots, Greek Cress, Radish, Mixed Salad Leaves, Raspberries. Beetroot and Blackberries.

Georgie

  • Posted: Sat. 7th March 2009 20:05

veg in containers

Reply from Lynn Franklin

I'm chitting Charlotte and Nicola, I tried Charlotte last year in the ground, but lost them to wilt. So second time lucky. It's making me wonder now about carrots, I was hoping they would grow ok, now not so sure. Never thought about sweetcorn, might just have to give that a go instead.

  • Posted: Sat. 7th March 2009 14:20

Potatoes

Reply from Georgie

I'm going to try to grow potatoes for the first time this year and will be using an old 56lt compost sack. I have four first early seed potoatoes 'Swift' chitting nicely and today I prepared the sack. I folded down the sides, put plenty of drainage holes in the bottom and added a good layer of crocks. I'll be adding about 10 cm of compost and organic slow release feed in the bottom and will plant the potatoes next weekend.

Georgie

Potatoes

Click image to enlarge

  • Posted: Sat. 7th March 2009 19:53

Potatoes

Reply from Georgie

I thought I'd post a picture of the Potatoes chitting. As I'm new to this do you think they will be ready to plant out next weekend?

Georgie

Potatoes

Click image to enlarge

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 17:30

Veg in containers

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Lynn,

I am growing Charlotte for the first time this year, along with Kestrel and Rooster.

I have grown Pentland Javelin in containers for the past two years and they were great but I didn't have anything to compare them with. I'm branching out this year!

I do know people who have had great success with carrots in containers, so don't be put off.

Jo.

  • Posted: Sat. 7th March 2009 20:25

potatoes

Reply from Lynn Franklin

somebody recommended the 2 varieties to me so we'll have to compare notes on them. I gave up growing a lot of veg as there are just the two of us now and my OH doesn't eat veg, so it's just as cheap to buy what I want from other growers, but I can't do without growing just a bit :)

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 09:14

Can't kick the habit!

Reply from Georgie

LOL Lynn, I know what you mean. My OH will only eat basic veg too so I concentrate on growing things that I like. You just cannot beat the taste of home grown can you? I'll never be self-sufficient with such a small garden but the satisfaction of pottering around in the summer and helping myself to Peas, Strawberries, Physallis etc is fantastic. Early crops rarely get as far as the kitchen!

Georgie

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 14:57

hooked

Reply from Lynn Franklin

no matter how small a space I had I would always find a way to grow tomatoes and beans, they just don't taste the same from the shops, besides, it's that excitement you get just growing them.

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 16:14

Hooked

Reply from Joanne 9919

Georgie, your potatoes have chitted really well. What a great photo too to demonstrate what they should be like! Long, spindly, white shoots are not good (what I usually find when I see a long forgotten spud in the back of my potato cupboard) and they are usually produced when the potato has been kept somewhere too warm or dark.

Lynn and Georgie, I'm so glad that I'm not the only long-suffering wife who has a hubby who won't eat veg. Mind you, I can't believe that since starting to grow my own, it's not only the kids who are eager to try new things, but after over 40 years, my hubby is also eating it!! Not only what I've grown either, I think that he's got into eating veg by trying mine, but it's gone a step further and he's eating quite a lot now, even bought produce. It's hard work sometimes, not just trying to get your kids to eat their greens, but also a grown man!!! I can't understand it myself, as I don't think there's anything nicer than good, fresh veg.

Jo.

  • Posted: Sun. 8th March 2009 22:47

Eating veg

Reply from Georgie

Hi Jo.

It's funny because my daughter and grandaughter will eat any veg but the other half will only eat the 'basics' like cabbage, carrots, peas and beans. I'm convinced it's the way he was brought up. I've tried disquising stuff but it's no good, he just doesn't like it. Any tips?

Georgie

  • Posted: Mon. 9th March 2009 10:05

Eating Veg

Reply from Lorna Hazeltine

Georgie, leave the poor man alone LOL. If he eats the veg you have listed he will be OK..

  • Posted: Mon. 9th March 2009 13:53

Eating Veg

Reply from Joanne 9919

The only way I've got my OH to start eating veg is by telling him the kids aren't going to try anything new if he doesn't. Once he's eaten something a few times he's got used to the taste and said it actually isn't that bad.

Honestly, it's like weaning a baby!

I do think it's to do with upbringing. He used to tell his mum that he didn't like veg, so she didn't give him any. I used to tell my mum I didn't like veg, but I still got a plate full and was told to eat it. I didn't particularly like veg when I was a child but I love it now.

However, I'm with Lorna on this. If he's eating cabbage, carrots, peas and beans, it's better than no veg at all. My OH didn't eat any!

Jo.

  • Posted: Tue. 10th March 2009 10:16

Feeling guilty now

Reply from Georgie

Oh dear, to his credit my OH also eats cauliflower, celery, spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes and peppers! I realise now that perhaps I've been too harsh! I just can't understand why he doesn't like things like asparagus, courgettes and leeks. I'll count my blessings. :D

Georgie

  • Posted: Tue. 10th March 2009 21:08

Peas?

Reply from mand

I tried radishes in a pot, but think i overcrowded them. I have never grown anything i could eat!

I bought a load of pea seeds last year but then my mother told me they need very deep soil - so my ears pricked up (can screen-reading eyes 'prick up'?) at your mention of growing them in containers. Were they very deep tubs?

I have a shady patio and a sunny patio, nowhere to have a veg bed. And i need things raised as i struggle to get to ground level most days.

Thanx for any thoughts.

  • Posted: Tue. 17th March 2009 18:49

Peas in containers

Reply from Georgie

Hi Mand.

If you have containers/raised beds at least 30cm deep then you can grow peas. The only thing I'd say is that unless you have plenty of room you are not going to be giving them away - in fact if you are anything like me you'll pick the pods but they'll never get as far as the kitchen!

Growing your own food - no matter how little - is one of the most satisfying things you can do IMHO. I hope you have some successes this year and do let us know how you get on. :)

Georgie

  • Posted: Tue. 17th March 2009 21:06

Thanx, Georgie.

Reply from mand

Thanx, Georgie. 80)
I will let you know how i get on, if i get on [with it]!

Sure i'll be the same as you, munching them before anyone else spots them.

One of my reasons for wanting to grow peas is that my husband has never tasted them fresh from the pod. Believe it. And it's one of my favourite childhood memories. How i managed to be a non-gardener (until my 30s) after growing up with such industrious veg gardeners... ??!

  • Posted: Wed. 18th March 2009 11:56

Peas

Reply from Joanne 9919

Hi Mand,

I grow my peas in a large container, it doesn't have to be too deep. I usually plant around nine or ten plants in the one container and the harvest does me for a few meals.

There are varieties which you can buy especially for growing in containers, however, I have heard that they don't crop as well as the normal varieties. I usually grow Early Onward and they have always done well for me.

As for radishes, their seeds are quite large so you can sow them individually spacing them as required. I have even grown the round variety in a seed tray and they have grown well, so you don't need a huge pot for them.

I would say try growing anything that you enjoy eating. I didn't know if sweetcorn would grow in containers, but they were fantastic!

Let us know what you are going to try and how you get on.

Jo.

  • Posted: Wed. 18th March 2009 12:00

Thanx, Jo.

Reply from mand

I'll certainly give peas another try.

The radish seeds i sowed weren't *that* big - iirc. I'll give them another try too!

Don't know when i'll be giving anything a try, mind you.

I have some aubergine seeds (a really optimistic moment last year when i ordered lots of things, lol) so i may try those too. But having just seen on your profile that they're tricky, and having read they're trickier than tomatoes, and having never grown tomatoes...

watch this space! ;0)

  • Posted: Wed. 18th March 2009 12:56