Back Porch Gardening

Vegetable Garden Growing Tips

The back porch is a great place to start a vegetable garden.  Growing a garden is cheaper and healthier than shopping at a grocery store.  Organic fruit and vegetables are the healthiest option, but too expensive. Non-organics are sprayed with pesticides and other chemicals, plus they lack taste. Starting an organic vegetable garden on the back porch will save you money. Walking out the back door to pick a fresh, lush tomato is all around better than driving to the grocery store. A porch garden can yield plenty of vegetables, fruits, herbs, and flowers.

Tools to Start a Back Porch Vegetable Garden:

- patio, yard or back porch space
- potting soil
- containers, pots, garden boxes, patio garden stand, or upside down planters
- tomatoes, potatoes, strawberries, peppers, herbs, list of flowers or vegetables
- source for water
- small garden shovel

Step 1 - Choose the Back Porch Garden Vegetables

Make a grow list.  Include easy growing fruit and vegetables like tomatoes, strawberries, potatoes, and bell peppers.  Tomatoes are easy to grow. The vegetable growing list depends on what you like.  Choose vegetables that grow in your climate and fit your porch gardening space. For example, growing corn or sunflowers on a back porch garden limited by height wont work well.  Consider the amount of shade and sun in the garden space during Spring, Summer, and early Fall.  Each vegetable grows best in a certain environment.  You don't want to plant something that need full sun in a shaded area.  Consider growing herbs like basil, cilantro, thyme, rosemary, lavender, mint, and parsley.  Picking fresh herbs and vegetables from the back porch garden at dinnertime is great.

Step 2 - Buy Vegetable Containers - Planters, Hanging Planters, Wine Barrels, Mini Greenhouses

Choose planters. Garden containers come in many sizes. Hanging containers and self-watering planters are useful for small porches, patios, decks, or balconies. Gardening on the back porch or in a small space must consider utilizing the space in the best way possible.  New gardeners or gardeners who don't want to spend a lot of time on maintenance should look for vegetable containers and planters that accommodate them.  Buy ready-to-plant garden planters and containers.  These ready made planters are easier to assemble than anything from IKEA!  Just follow the directions and you have an almost fool-proof back porch gardening container for growing herbs, flowers, and veggies.

EarthBox Garden Kit - Just Add Soil, Seeds, and Water - Easy Garden Planter

The EarthBox Garden Kit is an easy-to-use,  ready-to-plant, garden container ideal for porches, decks, balconies, and windowsills. The EarthBox Garden Kit is an indoor/outdoorEarthBox Garden Kit for Back Porch Vegetable GardensCredit: mobile garden container on wheels and it is the easiest way to grow an organic garden on the porch.  The mobility is useful with back porch gardens, for example, allowing you to move it in and out of the sun or shade, and even rolling it inside if the temperature drops too low.  The EarthBox Garden Kit is an Amazon best seller because it is easy to use -- just add the planting soil, seeds, and water, then wait.  The EarthBox Garden Kit is perfect for a porch garden and is recommended by Amazon customers because of its simplicity. Save money and buy the EarthBox Garden Kit from Amazon. Follow the instructions and watch the back porch veggies grow.

Step 3 - Plant the Vegetables for the Garden

The EarthBox Garden Kit is a great planter for a back porch garden.  There are other ready-to-grow or just-add-soil planters available, depending on what you want to grow and how much room the garden is taking up.  There are ready to grow tomato plants as well as potatoes and other vegetables and fruits. 

Plant at least one fruit or vegetable from the "Dirty Dozen" list.  The Dirty Dozen iDirty Dozen - Fruits and Veggies People Should Buy OrganicCredit: jpwriters a list of fruits and vegetables that the Department of Agriculture has determined are full of the most pesticides.  This list is used by people to decide when it is important to actually spend the extra money and buy organic vegetables.  Back porch gardens give you a chance to save money (and your health) by planting and growing organic gardens.  Out of the 12 fruits and vegetables strawberries are really easy to grow in a back porch garden.  Amazon sells all sorts of fruit and vegetable seeds and starter plants, including Tribute Everbearing Strawberries that are great for eating fresh and freezing after you're surprised so many strawberries grew in your garden.

If you want to start a garden from seeds then use one of the germination stations.  Buying  fruit or vegetable plant starts is the easiest way to start planting a porch garden.  

Document the Gardening Process to Make a Healthier Back Porch Garden Next Time

Go easy if this is your the first garden. Use a calendar to take notes about your gardening process. Write detailed information, like when the name of the seeds you planted, date the first seed sprouted, how many potatoes grew, or the number of weeks it took tomatoes to ripen.  This is very valuable information that you can use year after year. Gardening is trial and error at times.  Using your written guidelines will enable you to plant an expanding back porch garden over the years. 

Back Porch Garden Tips:

  • Do not plant outside until the temperature is consistently warm and there is no chance of freezing weather.   Check planting information for your specific garden vegetables. 
  • Spraying weeds in your yard can get into the soil of your garden depending on where you are spraying. The water can run into the soil or the wind can carry it to the leaves and soil of your garden. Be careful to only spray on non-windy days if you do decide to use any gardening sprays.
  • Make sure that potted plants have a way to drain properly.  If potted garden plants cannot drain then they can get mildew and root rot, which can damage the plant.
  • Put a hummingbird feeder on the back porch, too.  Hummingbirds are fun to watch and they also pollenate flowers.