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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have 12 large outdoor plastic pots...and on a whim bought a few 99 cent seed packets for peas,tomatoes, and beans...any tips on starting them off in the house? Due to our climate...most people do not plant seeds till mother's day weekend. but if started indoors...we could get a headstart. Any tips are appreciated. Janine
 

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I was wondering the same thing...and I'm in Alberta too. :) I was planning on just planting outdoors after the May long weekend, but I'd really like to hear from any experienced container gardeners!
 

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I used to container garden. I would do bell peppers and strawberries and lavender. And oh yea, onions. As far as starting them inside, I was thinking maybe you could cover the top of the container will saran wrap to have it be like a greenhouse. Or you could cover the soil with a glass jar, a la martha stewart if you had one big enough. I would use miracle grow soils. Good Luck and just go for it and see what happens!
 

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~I was so mad at my hubby last year for buying the expensive $4 bag of Miracle Grow potting soil instead of the cheapo stuff I requested. Until my lettuce grew up super fast and absolutely perfect.
Get good soil for your containers. It's worth it!~
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Perfect...yes the pots are filled with the moisture control...and miracle grow...50/50 mix I believe...I love the idea about planting and covering with plastic wrap for a green house effect...thanks for the help...not so nervous about it now lol.
 

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I don't have any earth-shattering tips, but I definitely enjoy using containers. They are so easy to maintain. I plant my herb garden in a large container and keep it on the patio. I've also had good luck with tomatoes, peppers, lettuces and spinach.

Have fun with it!
 

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With the very large amounts of soil I use,I have to make my own potting soil.I buy the cheap stuff,mix in peat moss and compost.I usually buy at the end of season when places like Zehrs have their clearance sale,we will fill the truck.I have more than I need for the next year,and it costs a fraction of the price.
 

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I am trying a container garden outside as well. What is the best watering method?

I am thinking of poking tiny holes in water bottles and half-burying them. Then I just fill up the bottle every so often. Kind of a soaker/drip system. Has anyone tried that before?
 

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There are some really nice books on container gardening. Some have Mini-plans if you will, that will walk you through inter planting to maximise even that little space, plus to change out spent plants through the seasons.
We used to get the frosting buckets from our super markets bakery (frosting), and use them as planters. We've grown eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, and cucumbers in them. If you want to grow something like squash - those big toy/cooler tubs (the huge ones with handles) work very well.
You can also add little trellisses for things like cukes and beans to climb on, leaving room for another little something else sometimes :)
 

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The better the soil the better your plants. If you container garden make sure your plants have enough water. I went to a garden "talk" last weekend and they had a watering system that hooks up to your hose that watered 10 pots.
 

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See if your county has a recycling program. You might be able to get soil or ground covering for free there.

When planting herbs, the type with woody stems come up every year in the same pot. I keep them outside all winter long. I am always amazed when I see the chives come up. I use organic fertilizer.
 

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Here's my best tips:
~ a light but absorbent soil, homemade or store bought. Just make sure it is not a heavy soil.
~ container usually require a lot of h2o, so I make my own "Aqua globes". I take a plastic bottle, the larger the container the larger the bottle. Cut bottom of bottle off, take lid off, bury half of the bottle upside down. This way AFTER I water my plants, I fill up my bottles & this really helps keep them hydrated.
~ make sure you allow for good drainage in container. IMO no store bought container has enough drainage, so I create my own. Take plastic bottle bottoms you cut off for "aqua globes", put several pencil size wholes, turn upside down to make little domes in bottom of container before you put your soil in. You can use rocks in the bottom, those little black 3-5" pots your plants come in, any thing to give the soil space to dry.
Hope you have fun!!!:bfly:
 
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