Living in the middle of a bustling city is not a reason for you to let go of your dreams to own a splendid garden. Gardening enhances the aesthetic of any property. Plants and flowers add color, texture, and appeal to rather dull spaces. However, aesthetics is not the only reason people build gardens. You can also start an urban garden to grow your own food.
While urban gardening cannot solve the food security problems in major cities, it can still help. This is especially true in the middle of the pandemic. The lockdowns and ever-rising food costs and shortages have caused a rise in people’s interest to grow their own fruits and vegetables. Empty shelves in supermarkets due to panic buying made people realize the importance of having access to fresh produce.
Four Questions to Ask Before You Start an Urban Garden
If you are not among those who went tilling in their backyard during the lockdowns, it’s not yet too late. You can still use those shovels and picks in your stock room. Look for urban gardening ideas that suit your preference. But before you actually get to digging, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Answer these questions first before you get started on your dream garden project.
1 – How much space do you have to start an urban garden?
The amount of available space you have at home will determine the kind of gardening you are allowed to do. It will also dictate the types of plants you can grow.
Some people who don’t really have space resort to indoor gardening. They grow herbs, succulents, and small pants inside the house. Indoor gardening is perfect for growing herbs that you will frequently use for cooking. You can plant Basil for a start. They are easy to grow, and they propagate quickly.
If you have some space outside, you will have plenty of options. You can try container gardening. It is basically gardening using-well, you’ve guessed it-containers. You can do this on a small patio or in even bigger spaces. Your containers don’t have to look rigid or uniform. You can get creative with it. Use old pots, kettles, and metal boxes.
You can also do raised bed gardening. Basically, your urban garden plots will be enclosed with a structure. The enclosure can be made of wood or concrete.
Huge spaces can accommodate a water garden. Water gardens include small ponds for fishes and aquatic plants. You are probably dreaming of having one for your backyard. If your space allows it and you have the budget for it, go ahead. Just be prepared to hire services and equipment. For one, you can reach out to an excavator rental service at the beginning of your project.
2 – What types of plants do you want to grow?
Once you have determined your space and the gardening method you will use, you can now decide on the kinds of plants you want to grow. Do you want to grow herbs, medicinal plants, vegetables, or flowering plants?
Are you going to start with seeds? Or will you go for seedlings because you are not that impressed with your own green thumb? Consider your budget when choosing which plants to grow. You also have to know how much care they need to succeed. Do research as well on the compatibility of your selected plants with other existing plants.
3 – What type of soil are you going to work with?
Buy a test kit to have your soil pH level tested. You can also avail of soil testing services in state universities near you. You would also need to have your soil tested for lead content. Lead is dangerous, especially if you are trying to grow vegetables in your urban garden.
4 – How much time can you actually devote if you start an urban garden?
Finally, ask yourself how much time you are willing to spend on your garden per day or week. Consider your job, your other house responsibilities, and the amount of work that making the garden will require. Your new tasks would include watering, raking, weeding, and mowing. Having all of these laid out will help you plan out a schedule that you can maintain.
Be realistic about scheduling your tasks. Having a garden is a long-term commitment. Once you start, working on it will be a regular part of your daily life.
After thinking about the answers to these questions, you might next be ready to start an urban garden. Your plans for your garden may change a few times along the way; that’s okay. You own this project, and you make the rules.