Can You Grow Vegetables Indoors? Tips, Tricks, and How-To Guide
If you love gardening your oasis of vegetables, herbs, fruits, and plants and wish for warm weather every time the winter comes, there is an easy solution. Indoor gardening is gaining more popularity since more people are confined to smaller spaces and are searching for alternative gardening methods.
Believe it or not, you can transfer your entire vegetable garden indoors, and it actually has some benefits, so keep reading to find out what some of its benefits and advantages are.
Benefits of growing vegetables indoors
The most significant advantage of indoor gardening is controlling the conditions your plants are growing. That means having the ability to continuously improve the soil for your plants, and control the temperature of the room, lighting, and watering levels. As you are probably aware, gardening healthy vegetables outdoors depends on many factors that you cannot change. Sometimes you can’t shield your plants from rain, hail, or direct sunlight.
There are many outside factors that you can’t change, so when you grow your plants indoors, all of these factors are entirely up to you to control. You get to observe your vegetables and cater to their needs. This way, you can help them grow faster by either adding fertilizer, better grow lights, changing that room’s temperature, or moving them to a lighter area.
Drawbacks of indoor vegetable growing
While the benefits of growing vegetables indoors are vast, there are some challenging aspects that you have to be aware of too. There is always a risk of having houseplant pests attached to your vegetables, which is a nightmare for garden lovers. Proper air circulation is something you can’t always upgrade to meet the vegetable’s needs, and your indoor garden will be hidden from pollinating insects like bees.
The indoor garden certainly requires more maintenance, as you will always have to be careful of how much lighting your plants receive. Adequate lighting may not be as convenient since it can be very expensive to purchase and install.
Before you begin
Start with the easier plants. Begin growing more low-maintenance plants and vegetables until you get some experience. You can start with these plants and expand your indoor garden with various other vegetables. Some vegetables grow faster and do not need perfect treatment to grow well:
Best vegetables to grow indoors
There is a wide variety of plants that can be grown indoors. Once you get the hang of indoor gardening with the easier plants mentioned above, you can garden any vegetable of your choice. Besides growing vegetables, herbs grown indoors will be a great addition to your meals. You can grow basil, oregano, rosemary, peppermint, or sage and harvest them directly when preparing your next meal.
What you will need to get started
1. Containers or planting pots
You will need multiple containers for planting seeds. The amount will vary depending on the number of vegetables you want to plan, although it is always better to have a few extra containers just in case.
2. Propagation trays or drip trays
Having a tray match your container is an essential part of gardening indoors. If you want to maintain a proper drainage system, you will have to place propagation trays underneath the pots to drain all the excess water into the tray. Depending on what you need, these trays can come with or without a lid.
3. Nutrient-rich soil and fertilizer
For indoor gardening to work correctly, you can’t use regular garden soil. Your plants will live in particular conditions, and they will need to thrive on only nutrient-rich soil.
The room you keep your plants in has to have an almost perfect humidity level. An ideal humidity level for vegetables to thrive is between 40% and 50%.
5. Air circulation
Excellent air circulation is an essential part of growing healthy plants. Because of the high humidity levels, these plants will be prone to fungus and mold. It would be best if you could add an electric fan to your room so that constant airflow prevents any fungus from growing.
Another crucial factor for most vegetables is the ideal temperature. Most vegetables will enjoy average room temperature or even lower. Indoor vegetables will mainly thrive in temperatures between 60°F and 70°F.
Additional equipment needed
How to plant vegetables indoors
Tips and tricks
If you are thinking of growing vegetables in hanging pots attached to your window sill, make sure the window sill is strong enough to support the weight of the plant and its container.
You can grow your herbs in smaller containers, but other vegetables such as tomatoes or eggplants will need bigger pots. These vegetables grow to be much bigger, so they need a large container to follow their growth.
Your vegetables might need deeper containers than regular pots, as their roots tend to grow and spread deep into the soil.
If you have pets, ensure that your plants are safe and pet-friendly. Some plants and vegetables are toxic for animals, so if you want to ensure your pet’s safety, research plants that will not affect them. These are some vegetables and herbs that are safe for your pets:
If you’ve read this article carefully, hopefully, you can better understand how indoor gardening works. It is effortless to grow your vegetables indoors, even though it seems confusing and complicated at first. Once you learn all the tips and tricks, you will be able to produce almost any vegetable you want.
Featured Image Credit: Pratchaya.Lee, Shutterstock
- 1 Benefits of growing vegetables indoors
- 2 What you will need to get started
- 3 Additional equipment needed
- 4 How to plant vegetables indoors
- 5 Final thoughts