Vegetable Patio Planters Growing Guide
Enjoy the satisfaction of picking your own tasty crops straight from your Vegetable Patio Planters, knowing exactly how they have been grown. Most Garden Centers and Nurseries sell ready-grown young vegetable plants, so choose the varieties you like, use our suggestions, or keep costs to a minimum and start your own tasty vegetables from seeds, indoors in pots on the windowsill or using our Haxnicks Rootrainers. Seed packets or plant labels usually indicate if a variety is particularly suitable for container growing, but look out for compact growing vegetables that have ‘bush’ or ‘patio’ in the name, and with eye-catching crops and flowers.
Tomatoes make a perfect patio crop, just try and resist eating them before you have a chance to get them into the kitchen. Grow a mixture of yellow and cherry red varieties for a fantastic effect. Leaf salad mixes are fast croppers ready to eat just a few weeks after sowing, and will re-grow up to 4 times if you trim the foliage and leave the base intact.
Cut and come again lettuce varieties are perfect container subjects, and easy to grow from seed. Mini vegetables are succulent and all the rage! Go ‘mini’ with sweet corn, beetroot, carrots, spinach, and parsnips. Mange Tout (eat all) peas have fantastic flavor and are so crisp and tasty raw in salads.
Why not try something colorful and decorative as well? Try ‘rainbow swiss chard’ or shiny ‘chilli peppers’ in a wide variety of deliciously hot colors. Courgettes are not only full of nutrition but are available in vibrant yellow and gold, bringing a taste of sunshine to your plate. Try something exotic, like Chinese vegetables or oriental leaves, Pak Choi, or beautifully dark aubergines to impress family, friends and neighbours with your culinary vision. Squashes come in all sorts of wonderful shapes and colors and so much fun the kids will love them.
Add a touch of the Mediterranean to your salad bowl. You can grow edible flower varieties such as peppery nasturtiums or pansies, seed catalogs list plenty of colorful ideas.
- Growing plants from seeds in pots on the windowsill or using Rootrainers will keeps costs to a minimum.
- A layer of mulch (e.g., chipped bark) around the top of the compost will help conserve moisture and help prevent weeds growing.
- Move planters to a semi-shaded spot at the height of the summer.
- Watch out for slugs & snails once the seedlings appear.
- Try sowing some more seeds indoors, or have more plants for follow on crops.
- Feed tomatoes and peppers weekly with a high-potash fertilizer as soon as the fruits start to form. Pinch out tops of tomato and pepper plants to encourage bushy growth and lots of fruit.
- Support Peas, French Beans, and Cucumbers with stakes or twiggy sticks.
- Grow French Marigolds for extra color and to deter aphids.
- Place a layer of gravel, broken pots or other suitable material into the bottom of the planter to help drainage. For Deep Planter use larger stones for drainage and stability.
- Fill with good quality multi-purpose compost or potting soil to approximately 1.5 inches from the top of the planter.
Follow instructions on plant labels or seed packets, remembering to thin out seedlings when large enough to handle.
You can maximize the number of plants per container according to their spread. Usually more plants produce fashionable mini-vegetables.
Water plants before planting and allow to drain.
Place the seeds or plants into the planter
Carefully add water in after planting without soaking the compost/potting soil.
Do not place outdoors until after the last frost, or keep in the light, in a frost-free situation.
Water regularly and do not allow the compost/potting soil to dry out.
Feed regularly from early summer with a good liquid feed or use a slow release fertilizer following manufacturer’s instructions.