Indoor Gardening Plant Choices

grow culinary herbs indoor gardening

Growing plants inside can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience. Which plants are best are really a matter of personal preference, but there are a few guidelines to bear in mind:

 

  • the size of the plants should be appropriate for the space in which they are being grown
  • group plants with similar requirements together e.g, lighting, humidity, temperature, watering
  • decide on the type of things you want to grow: fruits, vegetables, flowers, decorative plants, herbs etc. There’s no reason you can’t have multiple indoor gardens.

Some popular herb choices are:

  • Cilantro
  • Rosemary
  • Basil
  • Parsley
  • Oregano
  • Lavender
  • Chives
  • Mint
  • Peppermint

 

Some popular vegetable choices are:

  • Lettuce
  • Kale
  • Chard
  • Carrots
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes
  • Beans
  • Peppers

Some popular fruit choices are:

  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Dwarf Citrus
  • Dwarf Apples

Many flowers can be grown indoors as well including:

  • Begonia
  • Mums
  • Petunia
  • Marigold
  • Daisies
  • Pansies
  • Violets
  • Zinnia
  • Roses

lavender is a drought tolerant plant

Here is a link to an article we published previously on plants that are great to improve your indoor air quality and remove common toxins found indoors: “Plants that detoxify indoor air

Tip: Remember that indoor plants are grown in containers, and just like outdoor container plants, they tend to dry out quickly. Be sure to check the growing medium moisture level frequently. When you water the plants, use room temperature water.

Indoor Gardening – Growing Mediums

indoor gardening growing medium

As we discussed in Getting Started With Indoor Gardening, growing plants inside is not only a way to enjoy fresh fruit, vegetables and greenery throughout the winter months – it’s also a great way to obtain a healthier indoor environment year round.

When it comes to growing mediums, outside soil is not the best choice. It can be contaminated and it’s very heavy. Fortunately, there are a few other options available that you might want to consider.

Organic Indoor Potting Medium

You’ll want to choose a potting medium that drains well and doesn’t clump up and get hard. It should also have enough organic composition that it can hold enough moisture to nourish the roots of the plant and provide enough nutrients to maintain healthy growth. You will find the right potting medium at your local garden center.

Hydroponics

Hydroponics is another option available as an indoor growing medium. This option will take more setting up and therefore cost more than an organic potting medium. Hydroponics is a technique whereby you grow plants in a water rather than soil based medium.

Some people prefer this method for growing fruits and vegetables as the nutrients are more readily available to the plants. The other advantage of growing plants hydroponically is that you don’t need as much space.

Here’s a video showing a DIY PVC pipe hydroponic set up:

In our next article we’ll discuss the most popular plants for indoor gardening.

Getting Started With Indoor Gardening

bring the outdoors in

Winter can be a long, dreary, grey time of year when your garden seems to be a complete non event. Besides planning ahead for a gorgeous winter garden, you can turn those green fingers to another pursuit… indoor gardening.

Herb-as-decor

Indoor gardening provides multiple benefits:

  • organic fruit and vegetables direct from plant to plan
  •  welcome greenery when all outside is grey
  • air cleansing – as we discussed here

 

It’s a fascinating hobby and it doesn’t take much space. If you grow your own produce, it can also pay for itself! It’s also perfect for people with not much indoor or outdoor gardening space as it doesn’t need to take a lot of room.

Here are some typical indoor gardening spaces:

  • windowsills
  • near glass doors and windows
  • kitchen counters or on top of cabinets
  • bookshelves
  • decorative shelving units
  • tables

In fact anywhere there’s a bit of space and enough light is probably good for growing something… just be sure that the floor underneath is protected from any water spills and overflows!

Here are some tips to help you have a successful indoor garden:

Make sure there is enough light. In the winter months, especially in northern climates like ours, even a window may not provide enough light exposure and your plants may not thrive.

Lighting;

The good news is that gardening supply stores have special grow lights that supplement the available natural light. These lights provide exactly the right kind of light for plant growth. Be sure to check that you purchase the correct type of grow light for the plants you’re growing. Compact flourescent lights are also a good option and they’re more energy efficient than the High Intensity Discharge (HID) lamps. They can be used for most plants.

Most grow lights come with instructions on placing the light so that it is the correct distance from the plant. You’ll need to run the light for roughtly 14 – 16 hours per day for optimum plant growth. Less than this and you’ll find the plant won’t flower or produce fruit.

You can see when the plant is not getting enough light because the color will be off. Greens will be a little yellow. You’ll also notice that it is growing lanky and thin as opposed to nice healthy bushy growth.

Here’s a video that discusses the various grow lights:

Temperature control.

In most instances 18 degrees Celcius to 24 degrees Celcius is the optimum temperature for plant growth.

Humidity control.
Most plants require a reasonably humid climate. In winter with the heating on, even when it’s rainy, the air can dry out. If you notice that the plants leaves are turning brown on the tips, it could be that the indoor climate is too dry. This is an easy fix. Simply put a dish of water close to the plants. Grouping plants also helps preserve the humidity.
In our next article, we’ll discuss the various growing mediums you can use for your indoor garden.

A Year Well Spent!

Tanglebank customers

Looking back at 2016, our 20th Anniversary, it was a year well spent and we’re excited about 2017!

We are grateful to all our wonderful customers and friends who’ve made this such a wonderful year.  It’s been busy!  We’ve had even more events and workshops than ever!  Each one has been received with enthusiasm and everyone who attended had fun and went home with wonderful memories – and often their own unique handmade items!

Here are just a few images from our recent Ladies Soiree:

Ladies Soiree 2016Ladies Soiree 2016

 

 

 

 

Recipe: Butter Chicken BurgerLadies Soiree 2016

 

 

 

 

Ladies Soiree 2016

 

And here’s one from our Wreath Workshop:

christmas-wreath-workshop

 

 

 

We also had lots of fun events for the whole family, including kids.

Santa’s Pancake Breakfast and Elves Workshop was a blast!  

santas-pancake-breakfast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As was the Fairy Garden Workshop!

Miniature Gardens Fairy Gardens

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had so much fun this year that we’re going to have an even busier year of events in 2017, so stay tuned!

container-workshop

 

We wish you a wonderful New Year – may 2017 bring you great joy!  We look forward to seeing you soon.