Small Space Gardening – Part 2 Planting a Container Garden

Container Gardening

I am a beginner gardener which means I am making this up as I go along!  I was very lucky to take a small spaces gardening workshop and learn a few tips and tricks!

We started with seeds.  Man was that stressful!  I didn’t think they would grow, and for a while there they didn’t.  I remembered reading how to use a plastic bag as a little greenhouse, I ended up moving the seeds to another window and covering them with the plastic bag, within a few days most of the seeds had sprouted!  Once they sprouted they took off and became too big for our little window sill.

Yesterday was the day to take them outside.  Here are a few things to consider when planting your small space garden.

Container Gardening


* Choose the container you wish to use, this could be anything from a terracotta pot to an old bucket to a wheel barrow!  Anything goes.

* If it is not a traditional gardening container you will need to drill holes.  It is suggested you drill holes on the side, near the bottom so the water can escape easily.

* It is recommended to stay away from plastic containers as they can heat up in the sun and “cook” the roots.

* No matter what container you choose make sure to sterilize it with an environmentally friendly cleaner, rinse and completely dry before planting.


* Choose the best potting soil I really like Sea Soil which is also a local BC company.  My herbs thrived last year with this soil.

* Place plants that require similar amounts of water in sun in the same container.

* If you have a large container, think about the growth of the plant, placing larger plants at the back and shorter or trailing plants near the front.

* I could not find an answer in terms of how many plants to plant per container.  I went with less, as I believe they will grow larger only having a few in each pot.  When I was at the garden centre they had 3 plants in a very small pot, so I think whatever works for you.  As a beginner gardener I wanted to give the plants space.

Container Gardening


* Fill the container halfway with soil

* Place your plants in the container

* Cover them with soil, pat down and water immediately.

* Make sure you leave 1 to 3 inches at the top of your container, do not fill your container right to the top with soil.  This can cause the water to run off and not soak into the soil.

* If you have plants like beans or tomatoes add a stick for when they grow taller.  I did this immediately so I didn’t disturb the roots later on.


* Say hello to your new hobby.  Watering.  Plants need a lot of water and in the summer months when it is hot you may have to water daily.

* If you go out of town remember to have someone come by to water the plants!

* If the idea of all this watering is stressing you out, consider finding a self watering container.

Ok I think that is the basics and will get you started.  I am sure I will learn a lot about container gardening and there will definitely be a part 3!!

Small Space Gardening

Do you have any tips or tricks to add?  Anything I missed?  Make sure to comment below.




One thought on “Small Space Gardening – Part 2 Planting a Container Garden

  1. We’ve been big on the square-foot gardening ideal — even though we use some extensive raised beds. The point is that you can get a delightful variety of produce from some very extensive small spaces, and I doubt that a raised bed is really that different from a container.
    Have fun as you go and remember that the books are only starting points — reality will rewrite most of what you encounter.

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