Make a Patio Vegetable Garden this Summer

Make a Patio Vegetable Garden this Summer

Can you feel it in the air? The warm breeze (almost), the birds singing – and things beginning to grow? Can you feel the call of the wild? Or at least the call of the average sized flower pot? Take advantage of the season and make a patio vegetable garden.

This is when most people wander off into the
garden sections of their supermarkets and hardware stores and wander amongst
the shiny gardening tools, colorful seed packets, and fertilizer. They wonder
about what it would be like to have a little garden paradise all on their own,
and if they have what it takes.

Some folks who have patios never wander
outside of their comfort zone. A patio is a place to barbecue and maybe have
coffee on warm weekend mornings. What most of us don’t realize, is that it only
takes a bit of work to get your patio ready for spring, and summer.

What you need are a few simple tools, good
ideas, and solutions. You don’t have to grow your plants in the ground when
pots will do just fine. You don’t have to worry about constant watering when
there are many watering hacks out there. And you don’t even need good weather
to keep your plants safe when there are so many narrow lean-to greenhouse options for your patio, even if
it’s not that spacious.

Garden Hacks

There are many options when it comes to
planting, and some of them aren’t your average run-of-the-mill solutions.

Anything can be a container if you put your
mind to it. Some people use makeshift planting containers to add spice and
character to their patio. This might include things like:

  • Old pots and pans for growing herbs
  • Upcycled bathtubs, especially the antique kind!
  • Wooden pallets for vertical gardens
  • Wine Barrels
  • Old BBQs
  • Reusable shopping bags
  • Old boots
  • Wicker baskets
Beach bike was rescued from a scrap metal pile and converted into a cute planter at my home.

The options are virtually endless. It’s time
to upcycle! Some tools that are going to be especially useful for busy patio
owners are self-waterers. Of course, if you are lucky enough to have water
access outside, you can install an automatic watering system. But if your patio
is free of luxuries like running water, an upside-down bottle and a bit of DIY
will do. Self-watering spikes can last for up to two weeks!

You can have a tiny compost bin as well. If you have a little bit of space, you can put your kitchen scraps and coffee grounds to great use.

Decorative Veggies

cucumber trellis
Convert tomato cages to cucumber cages for an instant trellis

There are some veggies you can plant in your
patio garden that will keep it pretty and tasty. Rapidly climbing plants like
watermelon, cucumbers, squash, and pumpkins are always a great idea.

All you need is a trellis. These veggies will
climb and produce beautiful large leaves, beautiful flowers and a lot of
greenery even if they’re growing out of a container. If you train them
correctly, they can wrap a whole wall and ceiling in a green curtain.

Pumpkins, cucumbers, and gourds love hanging
around, and they will add a festive harvest atmosphere to your patio come
autumn. Their flowers are, of course, edible too.

Some other veggies that are pretty as well as
tasty are cherry tomatoes, decorative cabbage, kale, and peppers. If you play
your cards right, you will be munching away all season long. And if you opt for
a small patio greenhouse, you can extend the growing season by weeks.

Edible Flowers

Sunflowers: an edible prized by humans and birds alike.

There is nothing quite like growing your own vegetables, but if you are dead set on something that blooms and is pretty, then you can grow edible flowers as well and enjoy them for their aesthetic values as well as their yumminess.

A great choice for your salad and your pickle
jar are Nasturtiums. They grow
quickly, spread like wildfire, and bloom in intense colors of orange, yellow
and red. They can be grown in pots or made to cascade out of vertical gardens.
They can dress up any salad too! Nasturtiums have a sweet, slightly spicy
taste. Their green fruits can be pickled and used to be known as the “poor
man’s capers”.

Calendulas are an edible and medicinal orange beauty. Their flowers are used in
tea, salads as well as in skin-soothing salves and creams. You can macerate
them in oil to draw their goodness out. These are considered weeds by some and
grow very easily. A low maintenance miracle in a flower pot!

Lavender is a great low maintenance and drought resistant plant. If you are
forgetful waterer, this is a very rewarding flower to plant. Fragrant and
soothing, you can not only make scent bags out of dried Lavender flowers, but
you can mix them with black tea for added aroma.

Sunflower – Growing sunflowers on a sunny patio can add that rustic vibe to your space. You can plant them in large planters and grow them out of seeds. There are many different types and heights of sunflowers. If you have a few patches of the super tall, huge seed-bearing flowers you can have a fun harvest come fall. Tall sunflowers are also very impressive and attention-grabbing while they are growing.


Healthy Pastime

patio upgrades
Patio gardens are fun to take care of…give it a try.

You don’t have to have a full grown garden to put homegrown veggies in your salad bowl. A little know-how and a pinch of patience will help you get some spring, summer and fall joy out of your patio.

Of course, no one is saying to become a patio
homesteader. Developing a simple pot gardening hobby might be rewarding in so
many ways – it helps you to become more mindful of what you eat, taking care of
plants is a natural destresser and an antidepressant, and lush plants create a
sense of pride and accomplishment. What’s not to like?


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