The lockdown comes with its myriad benefits – one is saving the work commute time which is giving us all a reason to take up new and engaging hobbies. While we are all becoming masters of our own kitchens and taking cues from Michelin star chefs from around the world, how great would it be to turn up our culinary zeal another notch and grow some vegetables at home?
Not only will it reduce waste but it is a great way to harvest only what we consume daily. Growing your own vegetables and greens at home is easier than you think and absolutely rewarding. The biggest challenges of growing edible plants indoors are low light and a lack of pollinating insects and wind. However, on the positive side, you can control water, soil, and fertility. And since we’re approaching the summer months, it’s safe to say that it will be quite easy for the plants to thrive indoors near a window with abundant sunlight streaming in.
Try out these tips and tricks to kickstart your very own kitchen garden.
To get started, you’ll need a pot with drainage holes and specially designed indoor potting soil. While some options can grow in small planters, larger veggies will require big and deep containers so their roots have space to flourish. Once you’ve got your supplies, find yourself a sunny window (veggies will need at least 4-6 hours of sunshine while fruits will need at least 8-10 hours daily), and get to potting. Containers should have good drainage and be sized for the particular plant. Remember that shallow greens only need about a two-inch depth, but deep-rooted tomatoes will want at least 12 inches of soil.
When it comes to watering, each plant will be a bit different, but it’s always best to remember the old adage: less is more. And here’s a pro tip: You can set up a cool mist humidifier near your indoor garden to help simulate their typical outdoor conditions and to prevent them from drying out.
These small, fresh sprouts are probably the easiest edibles to grow indoors. They don’t take up much space or time. Since these greens will be harvested as seedlings, you don’t need much soil. A shallow (two inches deep) tray works well. Fill it with soil, moisten it, and scatter your seed. Water with a gentle stream or spray to keep the soil moist, and you should see germination within days.