Saturday, March 26, 2016

Quick tip: sticky labels for vegetable gardening

Posted by Amanda Villaruel | |
Each vegetable plant has different requirements when it comes to amount of watering and light, the right temperature and type of soil. If you're a newbie who is growing several vegetables for the first time, you're going to need to keep track of what your plants need ;-)
Write the vegetable plant information on sticky labels
Write the vegetable plant information on sticky labels 

I can't claim that I have green thumbs, so for me I need this kind of information up-front. With other things filling my head daily, I've grown tired of forgetting what our plants need ;-)

That's why I came up with this idea: write vegetable plant information on sticky labels. I found a package of address labels in our messy closet, and I cut one label into four pieces. For one hour, I researched each plant and wrote down information including:
  1. Water needs
  2. How much light? (sunny/partial shade)
  3. How often should I fertilize? (every second week, monthly)
  4. Type of soil it thrives in (sandy, heavy/light soil)
Chives as an example doesn't need nutrient-rich soil, while the basil plant loves it! Carrots and chufa nuts need sandy soil, and the hyssop enjoys light soil. Since I'm growing vegetables in pots and containers, I need to water them more often. The soil tends to dry out faster in terracotta pots. 

If there's any mention that a plant requires a warm temperature, I also note that down. You can also include information about companion planting. I found out that cilantro doesn't like to compete with other plants so it's not a viable option in companion planting. 

I also note down if the plant is a demanding type, if there's any mention of it. A demanding plant requires more attention :-)

And at last, I noted down information about container depth. Leaf vegetables and most herbs have shallow root systems, while carrots and broad beans need a container depth of at least 30 cm. 

Examples of label text: (translated from Norwegian)
"BASIL: at least 12 degrees, no draft or cold, sunny, evenly moist, liquid fertilizing every week."

"CARROTS: evenly moist, well-drained sandy soil, moderate fertilizing every third week, container depth 25-35 cm".
Sticky labels with vegetable plant information written on them.
Sticky labels with vegetable plant information written on them.

Where to research the plant?
Most of the time I use the search engines, but I also have some gardening books available.

Sites I use:
Tasteful Garden (vegetable and herb plant information in the left column)

I also enjoy using Grow it organically that provides you with practical information on common vegetables and some herbs.

For my Scandinvian readers, I recommend Hagen i boks.
Sage seedlings - indoor gardening
Sage seedlings - indoor gardening

When you're done, place the sticky label on the pot or container.

In the picture below, I placed the labels lightly on the seedling tray so I can re-use the labels when the seedlings are repotted in a few weeks. If I had placed them on the newspaper pots that get moist during watering, I would eventually have to throw them away and write new ones ;-)
Indoor vegetable and herb garden
Indoor vegetable and herb garden

How do you keep track of what the plants need? Please share! :-)

Continue to read:
12 nifty apartment balcony garden ideas (suited for small balconies/porches).

Sustainability as a business opportunity.

Have your say about what you just read :)

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...