Posted by Oliver Gardner on August 12, 2014
Most gardeners refer to the back of their seed packets for advice on spacing seeds and transplants in the garden. That’s good advice if you have lots of garden space, but container gardeners should read on for a few basic tips that will increase their vegetable and herb harvest.
The lower two planters on My Garden Post are 14” wide. Many folks think that’s a perfect size for one tomato plant. I’ve grown one Bushsteak tomato in the planter pictured below just to illustrate how much of the space in the planter is wasted on one tomato. All that rich soil mix you see could be put to work. “It’s ok to crowd plants in containers.
To put all that open space to work, I added some herb transplants that will take over the planter after the tomato harvest. Very few tomato roots were disturbed when I planted the two cilantros and the one lavender pictured below. It will be a full productive planter in no time. I have also successfully grown 2 tomatoes in one planter and still had room for a couple low growing thymes.
The point I want to leave you with is this. If you are able to see bare soil mix when you look down on your planter, you are wasting a good opportunity to increase your harvest. And personally, I’d rather be looking at plants than soil.
I often grow a variety of different peppers in the three small planters on My Garden Post. Even in the small planter there is plenty of room as I’ve illustrated in the next picture. This planter is analogous to one person in a car. It costs no more to transport 6 passengers than it does to get the driver alone from point A to B.
In this same pepper planter, I’ve added parsley but there’s no additional cost for the planter, soil or fertilizer. There is still room left for a few radish. Crowding can be a good thing. Planters are more productive and they just look much better.
Salad greens don’t mind crowding. This is a small planter that I set outside in mid-April. I took 8 consecutive harvests from this planter spaced every 7-10 days. That’s a record for me.
I hope these few suggestions encourage you to take advantage of every square inch of all five planters on My Garden Post. I have 11 varieties of herbs, vegetables and annual flowers growing on this MGP. That’s a lot of gardening on just 4 square feet.
Thank you for following,