An Infinite Variety Of Containers

The first consideration in choosing containers is size. Where do you want to put them, and how much room do you have? The larger and deeper the container, the larger the yields...up to a point Eight inches of soil is enough for just about any vegetable. (See Figures 10.03 and 10.04 for each plant's specific requirements.] If you've got fairly small containers in mind, and you want to grow tomatoes, stay with the smaller patio-type plants; the larger varieties of this great favorite require up to 20 gallons (3 cubic feet) of soil to produce a decent crop.

With size comes weight. Will your plants be moved around at all? You can, of course, easily carry the lighter containers from place to place, but the large pots are quite heavy when full of soil. So place them in a permanent position, not somewhere from which you expect to have to move them for watering, to put them in better light or for whatever reason. There are ways around this problem if mobility is important You can increase the mobility of your heavy containers by installing casters on the bases. You can stand them on a moving man's dolly or, if you have smooth floors, on a throw rug that can be pulled easily around the room. Another alternative is to place several containers on a child's wagon, locking the wheels in place until you want to move it Suitable containers can be made of many different kinds of material. Wooden containers hold moisture well and need less watering than clay pots. The same is true for styrofoam pots. Monporous containers, such as those made of stone, glass, ceramics and plastic, reduce the need for watering even more.

Drainage

No matter what the container is made of, no matter how big or small it is, there must be an outlet for excess water that percolates through the soil. Without adequate drainage, the excess water will damage the plant. Holes should be drilled or punched through the bottoms of strong containers, such as those made of wood, or through the sides (about 1/2 inch above the base) of plastic and softer metal containers (which would be weakened—and might not be able to support the weight of soil—if holes were bored in the base).

It's important for containers to have adequate drainage, but just as important that it not be excessive.

Figure 10.02 Container Spot Spitter systems

Spot spitters used at the end of spaghetti tubes can be utilized to water vegetables in individual planters or pots.

ROBERTS IRRIGATION PRODUCTS

700 Rancheros Drive

San Marcos, CA 92069

As a general rule, containers less than ten inches in diameter need only one half-inch drainage hole. Larger pots need anywhere from two to four holes each a bit bigger than a half inch in diameter.

Two final points on drainage. First, it's a good idea to cover the drainage holes with a layer of gravel, pieces of clay or other coarse material to prevent soil from being washed away with the excess water. Second, it's obviously wise to place a dish or other receptacle under the container to catch the escaping water.

Wooden containers

Because wood has a high insulating value, containers made of wood keep the soil from drying out quickly and require less watering than other types. You can buy ready-made wooden planters in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, or you can build them yourself. To build a planter that is one foot square, for instance, purchase five 12 x 12 x 1-inch pieces of lumber, two running feet of 2 x 1-inch stock and a couple dozen penny nails. Nail the pieces together, four sides atop the base. Then cut the 2 x 1-inch piece into four equal lengths and nail them to the four corners as legs. Boxes of any size can be built in a similar manner.

Containers made of redwood or cedar will resist decay for many years, and for that reason have proven popular with gardeners. For other types of wood, you can line the interior of the container with black plastic, or you can coat the wood with a preservative paint or asphalt compound available at hardware and other stores.

Figure 10.02 Container Spot Spitter systems

Spot spitters used at the end of spaghetti tubes can be utilized to water vegetables in individual planters or pots.

ROBERTS IRRIGATION PRODUCTS

700 Rancheros Drive

San Marcos, CA 92069

Vegetable Garden Pots
How To Can Tangy Tomatoes

How To Can Tangy Tomatoes

Interested In Canning Juicy Tomatoes? Here's How You Can Prepare Canned Tomatoes At Home. A Comprehensive Guide On Tomato Canning. The process of canning tomatoes at home has been a family tradition with many generations. Making home canned or home tinned tomatoes is something that is remembered by families for years! You must have surely seen your granny canning tomatoes at home in order to prepare for the approaching winters. In winters, one is usually unsure of getting fresh tomatoes.

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