Living a healthy lifestyle takes planning and determination — and salad bowl gardening is a perfect way to accomplish that. This method is a simple, non-overwhelming way to control what goes into your meals without needing a lot of space. For the green thumb person who wants to make a difference, but can’t seem to keep up with a whole garden, follow these steps on how to grow a salad bowl garden:
1. Benefits of Salad Bowl Gardening
This form of gardening is both easy and productive. Growing salad bowl greens and vegetables requires much less space and time as a regular garden because they don’t need all that space to grow into a full-sized plant. This also means they can be planted closer together. Another great thing about salad bowl gardening is that you can harvest multiple times after just one planting. Get your vegetables ready, and in a few short weeks, you’ll be able to eat from them. You can also continue to pick the greens off several more times until you have to plant again. Growing these vegetables in containers also helps with insects and poor soil.
2. Supplies Needed
Salad bowl gardening does not require a lot of supplies. You will need a container that is at least 6 inches deep and has a few drainage holes in the bottom. It does not have to be bowl-shaped, and you can feel free to get creative. Find potting soil that does not have bark in it (a seed starting mix is a good one to choose). Then you need two kinds of fertilizers: a liquid fertilizer and a slow release fertilizer. And lastly, you need your plants, of course! Greens grow quickly, so you can use seeds instead of transplanting, which makes it easier and gives you a better variety.
3. How to Grow a Salad Bowl Garden
Fill your container up with the soil. A few hours before you start planting, thoroughly moisten the soil without getting it sopping wet. Then sprinkle your seeds about 1/2 an inch apart in the container, and then cover them with some moistened but not soggy soil. Make sure you water the plants daily so that the soil doesn’t dry out. Pour the water until it comes out of the holes at the bottom, and make sure to empty any water catcher underneath the pot when it is full.
When the plants are 4-6 inches high, apply some of the fertilizer, following the instructions on the bag, and continue to apply it regularly every two weeks. Then, as soon as the plants are several inches tall, you can start picking or cutting off the leaves that you want to use, and the rest of the plant will continue to grow and fill in the space until the next time you need some.
4. Three Greens You Should Grow
For Destin, spinach, lambs lettuce, and onions are 3 great vegetables to grow in your small containers. Spinach is a vegetable that is becoming more popular in recipes. It is great in salads, and is made best if you let the leaves wilt rather than overcooking them. Lambs lettuce is a great filler for salads, sandwiches or wraps, and it can survive low temperatures and does not require high lights. Onions are best used as shallots and spring onions in your garden bowls. They can add a good flavor to your salad and are easy to store and grow.
So no matter what plants you would like to grow, and no matter how much space and time you have, you don’t have to sacrifice your health for convenience. When you learn how to salad bowl garden, you are taking your eating habits into your own hands and becoming a better person for it.