5 Best Fruits & Vegetables to Grow in Pots this Spring
By Tamara J Lowengrub MS
Cucumbers– Their vines spread fast and have a tendency to take over a garden. However, growing them in large pots prevents spread without limiting the potential growth for cucumbers. Short dwarf cucumbers grow best in containers. Cucumbers also thrive in warm temperatures with a moist top layer of soil. The large container and trellises will help the vines climb for maximum crop yield. For the best results, start with cucumber plants rather than seeds.
Tomatoes – These can be grown in 5-gallon buckets. Black buckets are recommended because tomatoes love heat and grow well in warm soil. For optimal growth pick a spot that will provide plenty of sunlight and water.
Sweet and Hot Peppers– These should be planted in pots with 10 inch width and 12 inch depth.. This size will hold 2 to 3 small plants. Sweet and hot pepper plants need a warm sunny spot to thrive and must be watered regularly. Avoid black pots when growing bell peppers.
Peas– In addition to large deep pots, peas will also require support stakes because pea plants will grow over 6 feet tall. The Large bushy varieties require 8 inch width by 12 inch depth pots. There are dwarf varieties that are able to grow in pots that are 6 inches deep. Peas need between 6 and 8 hours of daily sunlight and high temperatures. Pea plants need to be watered deeply once a week.
Cherries-Stella cherries are a good variety to grow in containers because this type does not require a second tree for pollination because they are self-pollinated. Stella cherry trees can be grown in a modified large toy tub. The tub would need holes on the bottom for drainage. Rocks can be added to help ensure proper drainage. Unfortunately, adding rocks will make it difficult to move the tub, so the tub needs to be placed in the warmest sunniest part of the yard. Cherry trees require consistent water. A mini drip system will make this task much easier.
Growing fruits and vegetables in containers are great for beginners. There is no risk of ruining a lawn or yard. In addition, containers allow for a more controlled environment. The soil, light, and moisture are completely in the planter’s control. There is no danger of weeds, the spread of disease, or fungus .and it is easier to prevent animals from eating the crops before harvest!