Thursday, September 13, 2018

Need Help Growing Foods in My Apartment

Sep. 13, 2018

Dear Cathy:

You are on my page for a reason. The one thing I know for sure is that I love plants and flowers. I have been trying for years to try to grow plants and flowers. I even talk to them and my thumb is black as they come. I live in an apartment on the 6th floor. The apartment gets plenty of sun all through my home. How can I plant and become successful in a concrete jungle. I need help. Feeling sorry for myself.

Dear Ramona:

Sistar don't feel sorry for your self, instead know that you are about to acquire a new life learning skill, and that should excite you. I am here to help...as a "Gardening Coach." I have a chapter in my book on how to successfully grow foods on patios, balconies, rooftops, porches, in kitchens and other rooms with grow lights in pots and containers. 


First off all just buy the unglazed clay pots with a hole in it with a pan (or saucer) to catch the drippings. These pots are very popular at homedepot.com or lowes.com and other gardening centers. 

Don't worry about the size to start because once the plants reach a certain level, you will have to repot to a larger pot, so buy a small pot to start. However, once some of these foods start growing, you will be amazed at how quick they grow so you can start with a medium pot, but everything depends on what you are growing. 

Make sure you go on google.com and youtube.com, which are the two largest websites on the internet once you figure out what you will be growing so you can get ideas there. 

After the unglazed clay pot, then buy everything ORGANIC...seeds, potting soil/potting mix and fertilizer. The potting soil/mix will come in a big bag so look for the word organic on front or in the ingredients so you need to become a label reader. If you buy transplants, be sure to wash off the roots before planting, because they were originally planted in toxic soil. 

Everything must be organic, so you might have to order everything on Amazon.com or at a natural gardening store in your city. Always buy and USE ORGANIC SEEDS versus transplants (or seedings) because they carry DISEASES so again try to look for a natural gardening store in your city that carry reputable ORGANIC SEEDS. Go on google.com and put in the words "Organic Gardening Store" and the name of your city.

Fill the pot with potting soil all the way to the top. Leave 2 to 3 inches from the top and plant the seeds only 1 inch down. Fertilize the plant every two weeks with organic fertilizer. Just read the instructions. Most people use some type of organic fish emulsion for potted plants. 

If placed where it will receive a lot of sun, then there is a good chance you need to water more...maybe 4 times a week. You can tell if the plant need more water. If the leaves are perky, the plant is getting enough water. If they are droopy, they need more water and if they turn yellow and is falling off, you are overwatering your potted plants.

Remember, growing foods is TRIAL and ERROR so you really can't mess anything up. Next spring I will offer a low-cost class and hold new gardener's hands, especially women, for one or two months, however, by then you can be a PRO growing all types of foods, especially in your region, in your own home. 

Ask the people at the gardening stores or nurseries in your city, WHICH FOODS GROW GOOD in your region, but only grow foods you enjoy eating for their nutritional content, especially green foods, which have the highest nutritional value. 

Learn more by reading Chapter 6 of my book, which discusses growing foods in pots and containers. The book is available as an e-book and paperback book and is entitled "Green Thumb at 60: How I Started My Gardening Journey With Raised Beds and Pots and Containers." Good luck!

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