You rent an apartment. Is growing your own organic vegetables out of reach? Think again. With a little ingenuity, you too can grow an organic garden — indoors, on windowsills, or out on your balcony porch, right in your apartment rental.
In fact, with a little creativity and an indoor garden, you can grow your own organic vegetables in your apartment year-round.
You’ll want your growing containers to have enough holes to allow for adequate drainage. You’ll also need a drain plate to catch the water so you don’t get water all over your apartment. Always plant your veggies and herbs with potting soil, not garden soil. They will have better drainage.
Leafy Greens — Kale, Spinach, & Arugula
The beauty of leafy greens is they are actually quite easy to grow indoors. They grow fast — about 4 to 6 weeks — and can grow in small spaces, perfect for the indoors.
Lettuce is shallow rooted, so you don’t need a big pot. Something 2 to 4 inches deep will do the trick. Plant with soil that drains well. Start by pressing seeds into the soil. Mist them with a spray bottle. In a week, you should start to see some effect. Once you’ve got a few inches of leaf, it’s salad time!
There’s nothing like fresh herbs to flavor a spaghetti sauce or soup. The thing with herbs is they really love the sun. Window boxes or maybe some planters on a balcony porch work best, depending on the layout of your apartment. You can also use lights, especially during the winter months.
If you’re looking to grow herbs in your apartment, we recommend sweet basil, chervil, parsley, lemongrass and cilantro. These are handy herbs to have around the kitchen and taste great fresh.
Start your own tomato seedlings in a planter pot, perhaps in a porch or a sunny room in your apartment. Once your plants are 4 inches tall, transplant them to a bigger pot. Keep in mind that tomato plants need at least 10 hours of light a day to thrive. So if you’re planning on growing tomatoes in your apartment in the winter, you’ll need some grow lights. Water-soluble organic fertilizer will help them thrive. When the plant starts growing flowers, shake it so the pollen spreads. Manual pollination is critical — without it, no tomatoes. As your tomato plants grow, they’ll become top heavy. You’ll need to stake them down or use a tomato cage.
Home grown peppers taste so much better than what you can buy at the store. And yes, it is possible to grow your own peppers in your apartment rental. Peppers don’t do well in frost, so indoors is key during the winter. In the summer, you can grow peppers out the window of your apartment or on your balcony porch.
Peppers need at least 10 hours of light each day to thrive. Plant them in a container that’s at least 8 inches tall. When watering your pepper plants, be careful not to overwater and drown the plants. Though peppers are self-pollinating, they could use some help with a good shake of the plant from time to time.