So - you bought a Patch Planter, and want to know what to grow based on the space you have available, and how much sun you get. In this blog post, we'll outline what to grown on the key limited factor - Sun.
What can you grow in a difficult, shady spot? Edibles can be tricky, but a few herbs will grow happily without much sun. Mint is a great option, as are chives. They grow without much effort on your part and are hearty enough to withstand your mistakes.
Part-sun environments really open up what you can grow. Greens are incredibly easy, and for intermediate gardeners are a great way to play around with seeds. Lettuces, arugula, and chard are all super simple to grow, and germinate quickly. Beginners and intermediates alike can opt, finally, for some non-leaf edibles as well.
Be careful if you’re planting multiple plants together; look at the tags to make sure they have the same requirements in terms of sunlight and water. Some plants naturally work together. If it was an herb box, and you had parsley, basil, mint, and cilantro? Those are all kind of similar, they like a lot of water and would do best under full sun. But others, like sage, thyme, and oregano, need less water and less sun, and wouldn’t do as well under the same conditions.
With part sun, you’ll also probably encounter pests. Even in an urban environment, there are plenty of bugs (and even squirrels and pigeons) that are just as eager as you are to chomp down on some fresh local produce. Addressing bugs doesn’t have to be complicated: A simple solution of a tablespoon or two of dish soap to a quart of water in a spray bottle and squirted onto leaves and stems will discourage most bugs.
You’ve got rooftop access or a sunny backyard, so the sky’s the limit now—or, rather, your available space is the limit. A key mistake that many early gardeners make is picking the wrong kind of crop for a small space. Instead, opt for smaller fruits and vegetables: tomatoes and chili peppers, sure, but also zucchini, eggplant, cucumbers, and beans.
This blog was adapted from Fast Company