Indoor gardening has become a fascinating activity for many, and it has been known to bring a good environmental presence indoors. Outdoor gardening is still the prime method of gardening, and it is pleasant when the weather outside is pleasant, but when it rains, it’s not possible to stay outside.
To be in the mood to play in the garden, the weather outside needs to be either sunny and clear, or at least overcast. In case of rains or storms, an indoor garden becomes a desired need for many.
The Benefits of Gardening Indoors
A wide variety of plants of various species, types, and colors can be grown in an indoor garden; flowers, herbs, and vegetables are just the tip of the iceberg. There are endless possibilities for indoor gardening, especially when the external factors play no role in deciding which type of plants you would like to grow indoors.
In indoor gardening, you have control over the indoor weather (environment that is) and you are able to control the heat, lighting levels, and moisture content. In case you are living in a colder region, an indoor garden helps protect your nurtured plants from cold rains, wind, and hail that could potentially damage the plants.
Another advantage to indoor gardening is having added pest control. Indoors, pests may make their way into the garden, but they will appear less frequently and are more easily detectable indoors. The sooner they are detected, the easier they are to control.
With weather control in indoor garden perfectly in your hands, you can pretty much plant almost anything to grow and harvest, regardless of the season. You can pluck fresh jalapenos and sweet peppers in the middle of the winter, or harvest some aloe vera to care for your skin.
Indoor gardening is a therapeutic experience; it helps you connect with the plants you are growing in your garden and helps boost your mood. The best part is you can enjoy indoor gardening no matter what your schedule looks like.
Tips for Setting Up and Indoor Garden
Setting up an indoor garden is pretty straightforward. With the following tips in mind, you can set up a really good-looking and well-drained indoor garden in no time.
First of all, place your plants in a position where they can thrive. For example, plants require lots of sunlight, lots of space, a nearby water source, and good airflow. Second, instead of using pots, try creating a soil bed instead. A larger growing area allows the plants to grow unconfined, allows water to reach the plants, and allows for slower draining (i.e. better water retention of the grow medium). (Keep in mind that soil bed is a colloquial term for a tray-like area resembling hydroponic farming beds, so you're not confined to the use of soil at all.)
Most plants do not thrive in direct sunlight. For these types of houseplants, you need to recreate a forest-like environment. Use net scrim curtains on windows facing east or west to filter the light for the plants, just like the tall leaves of the trees do so in rain forests.
Plants that thrive in direct sunlight should be placed on windowsills facing either north or north east, preferably north. Remember to keep checking soil moisture level as well as general plant conditions to ensure they are well watered, well drained, and not getting burned.
In case you can’t water regularly, place ice cubes in the pot or in the plant bed so they melt and the subsequent water is absorbed into the soil. Watering plants from the bottom is a good idea, too, so the water can be absorbed as soon as its applied. Watering plants from the bottom is as simple as filling their dishes up with water and allowing them to uptake the water. Keep in mind that the dish/plant bed needs to have holes in the bottom so the water can be absorbed, and any fertilizers used can be drained out.
A drain or a proper drainage system is a must underneath the pots, the plant bed, the dish or plant cluster so that not only is the excess water drained out, but also any residues resulting from use of fertilizers is drained out as well.
Plants can be set up in the bathroom where the higher humidity can help give the plant moisture. Plus, the frosted windows can filter out some of the sunlight. Bathrooms need to be spacious for this purpose.
In general, keep the plants away from air-conditioning and heating ducts, as they can adversely affect the plant’s moisture levels. Also, do not overwater the plants! Using a spray gun to create a water mist for the plants will help prevent overwatering.
Finally, keep in mind that if you are applying fertilizers, especially when you have a proper indoor garden, you need to have a drainage system installed underneath the plants or near the plants. A proper drainage system helps drain the excess water and fertilizer residues so your indoor garden can thrive without affecting nearby indoor areas and furniture.