DIY: How to Create Your Own Patio Salad Garden
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Looking for a garden project? Imagine fresh salad greens for your kitchen that you can find right on your porch. Whether you are a gardening newbie or have a natural green thumb, these simple tips will teach you how to grow your own patio salad greens. Follow this step-by-step guide from A Healthier Michigan with a little help from HGTV.
- Potting soil
- Salad greens seeds
- Fine mesh
- Wooden craft sticks/empty plastic milk bottle
- Step One: Find a Container
To start, find a suitable container that is deep and large enough for the greens you want to plant. The container should be around 7” deep.To make your own nutrient-rich soil create a mix of sand, compost and peat. If you don’t want to make your own soil, most garden centers have decent premixed planting soil. Make sure your container is placed in a mostly sunny spot. Some shade is unavoidable, but greens need more sunlight than darkness.
- Step Two: Plant Seeds
Make a half-inch trench along the back of the planter and sow seeds in it. Using your hand, lightly cover the seeds with soil, then water until damp.
Organize greens by labeling each row and area of your garden. Use wooden craft sticks or cut out sides of a plastic milk bottle to identify each crop.
To efficiently use space, think about planting a new row every two to three weeks in order to keep a regular supply. Also consider that crops grow quickly and form new growth when cut, such as lettuce and spinach.
Inter-planting crops, or planting a fast-growing crop with a slow-growing crop in the same space may also be a suitable option to maximize your produce. An example of this would be to mix radish and carrot seeds together. Radishes are ready to harvest in three to four weeks, while carrots need three months. They both occupy the same space, though, making inter-planting a suitable option.
- Step Three: Prevent Pests
Keep your garden away from hungry pests like birds, slugs and snails by covering it with a fine-knit mesh netting. To keep it out of the reach of other small animals, place your garden box on a table or windowsill.
- Step Four: Sow More Seeds
Add new rows of seeds to your garden every two to three weeks in order to maintain the stock. Rotating crop cycles is an efficient way to guarantee a year-round supple of fresh greens.
- Step Five: Water Regularly
Water with a watering can every few days. You should aim to keep the soil damp, while being careful not to over-water it. Test soil dampness by sticking your index finger into the soil about a half-inch. Only water when the soil is dry.
Ready, set, grow!
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- Prevent Pollution, Water Your Garden for Less with a Rain Barrel
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Photo Credit: A Healthier Michigan