Growing your own food and keeping indoor plants is quite rewarding. You nurture a little seedling and eventually, with the right care, it will pay you back in delicious produce or better air quality.
Many years ago I started my own small raised garden bed to grow fruit and vegetables in hope of producing my own organic food. Although I had some successes I also learned that some plants only live for a season and others can attract many exotic bugs that made my garden their home. Probably the most important lesson I learned is how much better my own produce tasted and how easy it can be too grown some staples.
When we bought our home we realised our soil was not the best, so again we set up raised garden beds, garden troughs a variety of potted dwarf fruit trees. Additionally, we added many potted indoor plants to liven up our home.
Where to grow?
Not everyone has the room or the best soil to grow amazing produce. So for smaller or temporary properties why not try small raised garden beds, portable garden trough, herbs or smaller plants in pots (inside or outside), dwarf fruit trees in pots or wall planter. This may be more manageable or easy to take with you if your move out.
If you don’t have space or don’t want to grow your own food at home why not join a Community Garden. It’s a great way to meet people, get back to nature, share in the spoils and learn about gardening. To find your closest community garden search your location on the Australian City Farms & Community Garden Network or similar organisations in your country.
What to grow?
Something to be mindful of when growing edible plants is to consider the region you live in and the season. There is a reason why big supermarket import from overseas and many big local producers need to use so many pesticides. Tropical foods shouldn’t be grown in a cold climate or in the winter time and vice versa.
There are plenty of resources online and books that are dedicated to what to grown and when to grow it in your region. Below are some of my favourite handy resources for Australian growers. Look out for similar articles if you reside elsewhere.
Gardenate is a great resource for Australians, New Zealanders, Americans, Canadians, British and South Africans. You simply enter in your region and you will get a huge list of edible plants that can be sowed or planted for the current month any other months of the year. This is great if you’ve set up your garden and now need some ideas of what to plant or want to plan when to sow your seeds.
About the Garden has created this these Yearly Seasonal Gardening Australia Vegetable Garden by Temperate (Regional) Zone charts. Press on the images to go to their website for a larger view and for more information.
The Permaculture Institute has created this amazing Companion Planting Guide. This will tell you the best edible and non-edible plants and trees to grow side by side, to allow natural insect repellant so you keep your plants and trees organic. Press the image for more information on their website.
What to grow indoors?
If growing your own edible plants isn’t something you can see yourself doing why not just fill your interior living space with indoor plants. Plants are great way to improve your air quality. Furnishings, upholstery, paint, building materials, and cleaning products all emit toxic compounds into the air. Plants are able to absorb these toxins and carbon dioxide and purify the air through photosynthesis.
NASA’s Clean Air Study found that certain plants that are the best at removing toxins from the air such as like benzene, formaldehyde, and ammonia. Below are some of the best plants for your home. Just beware as some may be toxic for pets and each plant may require different positions for sun exposure. See Home to Love’s article for more information on these plants.
If you’re interested in my series 10 Simple ways to get greener, see my previous post 10 Simple ways to get greener: Tip 1# Composting and keep tuned for more upcoming tips.