Having a home garden is now part of the new normal, but it’s not something that was invented now, decades ago our grandparents used to grow their own food.
Today, the allotment garden has been structurally modified according to the spaces we inhabit. Houses no longer have large gardens and most of us who live in the city do so in apartments of a few square meters where we can, with a little ingenuity, have an urban garden and tables ready to collect their own food.
In addition to ingenuity, we will have to take into account some key factors for the plants we grow to survive and for us to be able to harvest them successfully.
Key factors for growing an urban garden
Containers and culture tables
Since one of the limits of cities is space, different types of containers have been tested for growing vegetables such as vertically hanging bottles, pots on wooden steps, planters, perforated PVC pipes interconnected, but despite the fact that they seem ingenious, they contribute to recycling and they look good, they are not the most efficient.
The best results are obtained by setting up an urban garden on cultivation tables made of a noble material such as wood, although they can also be found in UV-resistant PVC.
These cultivation tables have the ideal height to work comfortably, they are available in different sizes and with spaces to organize tools, bags of soil and other elements. Even with separators to plan the plants to be grown in a sectorized way.
Each vegetable needs a certain depth so that its roots can explore the substrate, obtain nutrients and thus be able to develop well. The cultivation tables also solve this key point, offering different depths for the plants of our urban garden.
Leafy vegetables will be able to grow between 20 and 30 cm deep, while fruit vegetables such as tomatoes, corn or eggplant will need a minimum of 60 cm.
The culture tables are also very aesthetic, making our urban garden a space not only functional but also to enjoy and contemplate.
We all know that plants need water to survive. Each species we grow will need a certain amount of water to thrive and this will also be dosed according to the ambient temperature, the retention of the substrate and the container used.
It is possible to plan an automatic irrigation system that solves the water problem in a practical way, but no one like us controls this key factor for plants.
If the structure of the balcony or terrace allows it, a good option is to capture rainwater, since running water in cities contains large amounts of chlorine.
Light, like space, is also a critical issue in cities.
For the plants to grow properly, they need at least 4 hours of direct sunlight, preferably in the morning for leafy vegetables like lettuce, chard or spinach.
Whereas, for fruit vegetables such as tomatoes, eggplants or pumpkins, we will need between 6 and 8 hours of full sun.
Since it is a small space in an “artificial” environment where the replacement of nutrients does not occur naturally, we will have to pay particular attention to the substrate we use and the renewal of nutrients through the incorporation of fertilizers organic.
You can use compost, vermicompost and liquid fertilizers such as slurry.
In addition, the substrate must be light because some balconies or terraces are not prepared to support an urban container garden due to the weight involved.
You already have the most important keys to start your urban garden on cultivation tables. And not only can you be part of this movement to bring orchards back into homes, but you are also helping to protect natural resources. All that remains is to get some good organic seeds via exchange networks or in specialized seed shops, a sowing calendar adapted to your city and experiment!