Advantages and disadvantages of container gardening

May 1, 2024, 5:00 AM

container garden shown...

Is the portability and insolation of container gardening worth the frequent watering and fertilization? (Canva)


SALT LAKE CITY – Last week on the KSL Greenhouse Show, hosts Maria Shilaos and Taun Beddes talked about a topic that many gardeners of all levels think about often: gardening in containers.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of container gardening? Is portability and insolation worth the frequent watering and fertilization? To learn more about this topic, listen to our segment or read on below.

Many people have potted plants as fixtures throughout their small spaces that allow for creative expression. However, there are a few important things to keep in mind if you want to plant in containers.

Container Gardening Basics

The size of the container should be the top consideration when you decide to plant. The container you choose needs to house the roots of the plant when fully grown, so large five-gallon containers are ideal for commonly planted vegetables such as cabbage, beans, eggplant, cucumbers, tomatoes and peppers.

For plants with medium size root systems such as beets, green onions, lettuce, and carrots, a three-gallon container should suffice. Finally, your smaller container inhabitants, like radishes and herbs, will grow well in containers of one gallon or less.

But what about flowers? A general rule is the larger the height of the flower, the bigger the root mass you can expect, thus determining the size of your container.

When it comes to soil — the previous growing seasons soil may contain disease organisms and you should never reuse it for new plants.

Optimal sunlight varies depending on the plant. We recommend a minimum of four hours for leafy vegetables and many herbs, to eight hours for fruiting vegetables, flowering plants, and water plants to perform well. Right in the middle are the root vegetables that will do best with around six hours of sunlight.

Check out this publication from the CSU Extension about Container Gardens for more information.

The KSL Greenhouse is on every Saturday from 8 a.m.-11 a.m. You can follow the show on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and on our website.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

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Advantages and disadvantages of container gardening