We are at that point that we don’t know what’s really in our food anymore. The only certain way we know that what we’re consuming is healthy, all-natural food is if we grow it ourselves. That probably drew some doubts especially if you live in a fast-paced city in a small apartment and are juggling two or more jobs. You most likely don’t know anything about gardening and doubt that you have a green thumb or the patience to sustain an urban garden on your own. But please don’t shove the idea away without careful consideration of what it can possibly add to your life.
Urban gardening has proven a lot of naysayers wrong. Many people have taken up the hobby as a sustainable lifestyle after realizing the health benefits of growing one’s food. Gone is the misconception that crops only grow in rural areas. You’re searching urban gardening for a reason so we want to grow that seed in your head that you can cultivate your own garden even with a 9 to 5 job and a cramped space.
Reasons Why You Should Try Urban Gardening
Save and grow money.
A large chunk of your salary goes to food, whether you are aware of it or not. Plus, the unhealthy food costs weigh less than healthy food so if you want a win-win situation, urban gardening is the way to go. It would cut your food cost and would also ensure you healthy food.
What’s better news is that you can even sell your own food if you are growing more than enough in your household. What started as a hobby can become a money-making venture or a side hustle for you. It could also provide jobs for people in your area.
Grow your skillset.
You can pass on to your children the skill of growing your own food. In our world, today that processed food is king, having that skill set of knowing how to produce your own from seed to kitchen will help you stay healthy, save money, grow money, and never go hungry.
You’re ensured of healthy food on the table.
While you may not say goodbye to instant meals forever, growing your own food ensures that you will always have healthy options within your arm’s reach. If you pick up urban gardening now, you will start growing nutritious food, an endless supply of your chosen fruits, vegetables, and herbs. And if you live with your family, having an urban garden at home will ensure healthy food for the whole household.
There’s no doubt that you are growing high-quality food.
Having your own urban garden means you are in full control of what goes into the growing phase of your plants. Unlike food bought in supermarkets, your food from your garden won’t be filled with chemicals and pesticides that they use to increase production and shelf-life. You also have the choice to grow crops that grocery stores or big food companies won’t carry because they are not easily mass-produced.
Learn how to make the most out of your limited space.
Urban gardening will teach you to maximize your city space. You’ll instantly enliven it with the sight and smell of greens. Besides, there are many modern techniques that you may employ to grow a garden with limited space such as vertical gardening, container gardening, and hydroponic gardening.
Lessen your carbon footprint.
You may help contribute to the fight against climate change by lessening your carbon footprint. Buying mass-produced food means you are supporting an industry that requires lots of fuel in the moving parts. According to Agritecture, food in the U.S. is transported on an average of 1,500 to 2,500 miles to reach the consumer. With your own urban garden, you are helping reduce the fossil fuel consumption of our food system.
You will never go hungry.
Food insecurity is very much rampant in the US, especially in impoverished communities. If you have your own urban garden, you would always have something to eat on the table. It will cost you a fraction of what you might need to pay for it in the grocery store.
Your food won’t entirely be based on seasons anymore.
We all have those cravings at one point in the year of food we can’t find in the grocery store or the market because they’re not in season. With your own urban garden, you can grow food all year round. The conditions will entirely be based on your own growing choices. For example, hydroponic gardening or soilless agriculture employ certain methods that allow you to manipulate every stage of the growing process.
Urban gardening welcomes you into a community.
You will find like-minded individuals who are also passionate about urban gardening. Living isolated in the city may breed anxiety and depression. You’ll be surrounded by greens that will help curb depression but also with fellow humans who are also into the practice. You may share some ideas, trends, and personal habits that you do to grow your fruits and vegetables. It’s surely a fun, loving community to be a part of. If there’s none in your neighborhood just yet, you may start it by spreading the word around and teaching your friends or those interested to pick up the hobby.
It’s easy to get caught up with all the information online but if you’re a beginner at urban gardening, you should start with the basics. It might be overwhelming now but take it one step at a time and you’ll quickly realize it wasn’t so difficult after all.
The first step is you have to take a look at your space and what it can accommodate. Do you have a rooftop, a nearby fire escape, an alleyway? The size doesn’t really matter whether or not you can start an urban garden, it will just be a determining factor on what plants you can grow.
Next is to pick your pot and consider how many you want in each pot, what type of plant you will start with, and how many pots you want in your space.
You may opt to use hanging pots to maximize wall space. Install wooden shelves from Flexispot on a vacant wall. It may come in either maple or mahogany wood. It’s spacious and can carry up to 44 pounds. It has built-in hooks where you can hang your pots and also use the desk space itself for more pots. Imagine a wall with mixed hanging and stationary pots; your space will look like lush greenery.
The next step is choosing your plants. You can grow anything you want but with consideration of course with the space that you have. Also, it’s better to be mindful and plant food that you actually want to eat.
When you’ve chosen a plant, it’s time to plot it. Make sure your pots have holes on the bottom parts for water drainage. You must use the right soil for the plant that you chose. As a beginner, it’ll be better to start with seedlings to have a higher chance that your plants will grow and you can harvest food.
If you don’t have time every day or you don’t trust yourself to remember, you may install an advanced watering system that will only require you to water your plants yourself a few times a week. You can also get a water level monitor if you’re not sure how much water your plants need to get.