Introduction to terrace organic vegetables growing
Growing organic vegetables on terrace means your family can enjoy healthy, tasty, fresh produce free of synthetic chemicals or pesticides. You can always raise your organic vegetable garden on your terrace. It is therapeutic, rewarding, and quite cost-effective but requires a bit of maintenance. You will have to take care of some basic things before you start organic vegetable gardening like opting for a suitable space to grow organic terrace garden, selection of plants, and the containers you will grow them in, buying the right kind of soil and organic fertilizers among others. In this article we also discuss below topics;
- How do you care for organic vegetables in the terrace
- How do you plant vegetables in the terrace
- How do I start an organic terrace garden
- How do you make organic soil for a vegetable garden
- How do you grow organic vegetables in the terrace
- Control pest for organic vegetable garden
- Raised beds in terraces for growing vegetables
- How to build a terrace vegetable garden
- Terrace garden vegetable plants
- Terrace vegetable garden containers
- Organic fertilizers for terrace vegetable gardens
- Organic vegetable terrace gardening tips
A step by step guide to growing organic vegetables in the terrace
Choosing your pot for growing vegetables in the terrace
The first step to success terrace garden is to use a large pot. As vegetables are vigorous growers and require a large amount of soil for their thirsty and hungry roots, large pots are essential. Selected pots 40cm to 50cm in diameter across the top of the pot are ideal. A 40cm pot will hold about one 30 liter bag of potting mix and a 50cm pot will hold 2 bags of potting mix, making it easy to calculate how many bags you will need for your pots.
Choose the right space for growing organic vegetables on the terrace
Go to the terrace, take a good look, and judge the play of the sun throughout the day. And then, choose a shady place, but at the same time, gets direct sunlight for some part of the day. You’ve to ensure that the plants get at least 5 hours of sunlight daily. But mind you, some vegetables are delicate leaves, so be careful that the sunlight is not so strong that the leaves get scorched by the heat.
The terrace is an ideal place to grow your organic vegetables as it gets ample amounts of sunlight throughout the day. However, if your vegetable plants do not require that much sunlight, you can always arrange for a green shade net or greenhouse on your terrace or take a few indoors near windowsills.
Simple steps for growing your organic vegetables in the terrace
Buying 100% organic seeds for growing vegetables
With e-commerce and search engines it is very easy to find and source organic seeds online. You will obtain ample options to choose from. But take care of and select a reputable company for organic seeds. Read the reviews and customer testimonials to gain some insight into the company’s reputation before purchasing the desired organic vegetable seeds from them. A word of caution does buy fresh seeds like the ones used in the kitchen may be treated, too old, and not so encouraging.
Start terrace vegetable garden with organic garden soil
Get some soil and natural manure from any nursery, and then mix it well with the peats. If you want to keep it organic, add cow dung and goat dung manure to the mix. Leave this mix aside for a few days. Meanwhile, when you peel veggies, etc, do not throw away the skin. Instead, create your compost with these vegetable skins and waste vegetables in another pot in the terrace, and add them to this mix. After about a week, this mix is ready for plantation. Sprinkle a few seeds over the mix, slightly dab them in with the hand, and leave it be for a couple of days.
For a healthy organic vegetable garden, you want to start with healthy soil. The important component in the soil is the organic matter, such as manure, peat moss, or compost, which is the best option because it contains decayed microorganisms of previous plant life. Those microorganisms supply vegetable plants the nutrients they need. You can create your compost pile by designating an area or bin where the organic matter will decompose. Or you can buy it in bulk if you have a large garden, or use bagged compost obtainable at garden centers and home improvement stores.
Reduce weeds by spreading about 1- to 2-inch-thick layer of mulch on the soil. It makes a barrier that prevents weeds from getting sunlight and from germinating. This mulch layer prevents fungal disease spores from drifting onto plant leaves. Use an organic material (such as cocoa hulls, weed-free straw, or newspaper) as mulch so it decomposes it adds beneficial organic matter to the soil. Organic potting mix is a certified organic product and is structured to give ideal aeration and water retention for optimum growth.
Compost and Manure – Like all gardens nutrients are important for good crop yield. In the case of an organic garden, you will want an all-Natural, organic fertilizer to promote the development of the plants. Compost can be prepared by decomposing kitchen waste, dried plant leaves, or animal manure with the help of beneficial microbes to promote good yields. Create a well-drained and nourishing potting mix before you sow or transplant from the nursery. A good potting mix will help keep the soil moist a well-drained for air circulation. And, make sure you keep an eye for Pests and deformities in plants and treat them accordingly.
How organic compost ensure vitamins for growing vegetables
- Green manure helps to get nitrogen from the atmosphere increases soil nutrients, prevents erosion, furthermore its stores, and holds the organic matters and nutrients in the non-growth season.
- Crop rotation and green manure are also used to prevent diseases and insects.
- The farmers use animal manure which is a great advantage for the land.
- The Potash fills the deficiency of Potassium in the soil and the phosphorus and the green sand are the products of potassium which fills the gap of mineral for the soil.
- Moreover, commercial fertilizers are also used in this management such as Blood Meal, Seabird Guano, Pelleted Poultry Manure, Feather Meal, and Pelleted Seabird Guano.
- As you may be guessed that organic fertilizers are influential to growing plants. They grow rapidly and harm vegetables and crops.
Pick the right vegetables for organic terrace garden
Almost all vegetables can be grown in pots with just a small number of exceptions. The most popular varieties such as tomatoes, spinach, lettuce, cabbage, beans, peas, capsicum, chilies, carrots, celery, bok choi, and pak choi are all great candidates for pots. Vegetables that are not too large and cumbersome. For example relegate sweet corn to the garden bed, due to its height it may cause pots to become too heavy and topple over, possibly causing injury.
If you are a newbie to organic terrace gardening, it is important to start with simple plants that do not take much of time or resources and have quick turnaround plus less susceptible to pests like mint leaves, Methi, Spinach, Amaranthus, lemongrass, chilies, and holy basil, etc and then add more varieties such as cabbage, cauliflower, tomatoes, onions, pineapple, turmeric, and radish.
Vegetables for Pots: Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Radishes, Beans, Zucchini, Potatoes, Onions, Carrots, Beetroot, Lettuce, Garlic, Chilies, Peppers, Melons, and Eggplant.
Watering is the key factor for organic vegetable garden
Water the vegetable plants regularly, as and when needed. Though excess water causes damage and decay to plant roots, and it washes away the nutrients of the soil. Also, post every heavy rainfall and remember to add manure to the soil.
In terrace garden containers, you can plant almost any vegetable plan. Select large and deep pots, avoid thin and poor quality plastic pots because they heat up quickly and drain poorly.
Create raised beds on the terrace for growing vegetables
If you’re looking for practical as well as a stylish way to make an organic terrace vegetable garden, then making a raised bed is a great option. You’ll be able to grow a lot of vegetable plants as compared to containers. Vegetable plants will thrive better, with less care and maintenance.
The raised bed on the terrace does not differ from those you see in a regular garden. In well-stocked hardware stores or even online shops, and you will find special raised beds for terraces; you’ll need to configure which one is better for you. And, just ensure before installing that the surface of the terrace below is waterproof.
Fill Raised Bed with Soil – If you fill the raised bed with soil, consider preventing voles and pests from entering the raised bed. To make soil, then mix quality garden soil, ripe compost, and manure. The advantage of raised beds is probably the most significant advantage of a raised bed is the height and width on the terrace.
Planting vegetables in the terrace
Plant vegetable seeds or seedlings according to the directions on the packet. Seeds work very well in pots as potting mixtures provide good conditions for vegetable seed germination. Vegetable seedlings start so small, a common mistake is to plant them too close together. As the plant matures, however, they become crowded and do not perform or taste as good as they have if they had had plenty of space. Tomato plants will do best with one strong plant per pot. Beans and peas also will do equally as well with 2 to 3 plants per pot.
In case if you miss this: Organic Aquaponics Growing Practices.
Creating an organic vegetable terrace gardening in planter boxes
Flower boxes and planters can be used to create an organic vegetable garden. And, you can hang these on an existing railing or set them just on the floor. Do not use ordinary garden soil in planter boxes. Either use quality potting mix and compost-rich soil. Fertilizing is important to improve productivity, but it varies according to plants: peppers and tomatoes are heavy feeders, whereas green leafy vegetables do not need much fertilizer.
Vegetable plants for flower boxes – Cucumbers, Tomatoes, Greens, Garlic, Chilies, Herbs, Radishes, and Bush beans.
Use an organic garden fertilizer for growing vegetables
Potted vegetables can be fed the same way as vegetables in garden beds. Fertilizing vegetables will help them grow faster and yield larger crops. Types of organic fertilizer include well-rotted manure from plant-eating critters (rabbits, horses, sheep, chickens), prepackaged organic fertilizer bought online, or at your local garden center. You can find a variety of organic fertilizers at garden centers and home improvement stores.
Organic pest control for growing organic vegetables in the terrace
Prevent pests and insects using methods such as physical removal, a strong jet spray of water, or 10ml of neem oil mixed in one liter of water. Plantation of chilly/garlic/ginger is said to drive out pests while a spray of wood ash on the plant helps. One of the effective and natural ways to drive away unwanted worms is to invite birds. You can include a birdbath and a bird feeder to attract birds.
This is one area where pots trump over garden beds as vegetables growing in pots are relatively insect and pest free. Typical culprits like snails find pots less attractive and easier to spot. If you do notice insect activity, use a soft organic spray such as Searles Bug Beater or pyrethrum spray or flick them off the plant and squash them.
When growing tomatoes, attached fruit fly traps to the tomato stakes above the pots for added pest protection. No matter what you do, pests are going to find a way out to a beautiful terrace garden. Then, you can use pesticides to keep them away, but make sure to use natural pesticides. It is easy to prepare pesticides at home and you can try that also. You want to make a mixture of baking soda, cooking oil, and water for this purpose and then you need to spray it on the vegetable plants to avoid fungal infections. Also, use other pesticides like Neem oil for aphid nightmare.
The best practices to control pests in growing organic vegetables on the terrace
The first thing you need to do is joining the local organic farmers club and organic farmers are active in their community.
- Build healthy, compost heavy soil.
- Ensure Better quality compost.
- Choose disease immune vegetable seeds or plants.
- Monitor on vegetable growth stages.
- If there is any affected plant or weaker plant, pull out them.
- Wet foliage favors insects and fungi. So keep it dry.
- Water sufficiently on dry season.
- Protect plants from the direct sun using shed, especially in the early stage.
- Mulching should be practiced when needed and minimize the Insect habitat near your vegetable garden.
- Apply for organic certification.
Keep your terrace garden clean
Many diseases spread rapidly in dead and fallen foliage. So once a week (or more often if possible), walkthrough garden and pick up shed foliage. You can sometimes prevent a disease from spreading through an entire vegetable plant by picking off an infected leaf. Throw dead or diseased leaves in the trash, not in the compost pile.
Protect your plants from UV rays and birds
Pests are not the only threat to your vegetable plant. Once it starts bearing vegetable plants, birds and UV rays could harm them. You could cover your plants with a wire mesh or green garden net to protect your plants.
Decorate your terrace garden
It’s time to accessories your vegetable garden. You can use pebbles, decorative pots, install small railings. You could also place small statues, lanterns, and colorful pictures that complement the décor. For a more soothing effect, install fairy lights or bokeh effect lights.
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