Growing Food in Small Spaces
There’s a big misconception that you need a lot of space in order to grow your own organic food. The truth is that you would be amazed at just how much food can be grown in a tiny area. Fresh, organic produce is fantastic for your health, and working with plants is actually extremely therapeutic. So, if you’re living downsized there’s still no excuse to not be growing food in your small space!
One of the easiest (and also most effective) ways of growing food in small spaces is sprouting. This can be done in jars or in specially designed sprouting machines. Either way, the sprouts allow you to grow a nutrient dense food that is fantastic for juicing, adding to salads or even just eaten on their own as a snack.
Gutter Gardening is a very space effective and simple way of growing food. These can be attached to the external walls of your house, or they can be attached to a separate support frame. Most gutter gardens are angled so that the water runs from the top and zig-zag’s it’s way down to the bottom which allows for maximum use of the water. These gardens are most effective at growing leafy greens such as lettuce and spinach.
Window farms are an incredibly effective way of growing food in a tiny area. Most window farms are made from old soda bottles and use a small pump and hydroponic set-up to grow food. They are often constructed as DIY projects and best of all, there is a growing movement of window farmers around the world to learn from. You are able to find full instructions and a very active community forum on window farming from this website.
One of the best developments for growing food in small spaces over recent years is the Garden Tower Project. Not only is this tower designed to grow a lot of food, it also has an active composting unit inside the tower which contains worms. The worms process the compost and spread vermicast (a kind of fertiliser) throughout the soil in the tower. The garden is watered from the top and collects any spare water in a container in the bottom which can later be used for re-watering. Waste nothing!
The AquaFarm is a tiny aquaponics garden. It uses fertiliser from the fish below to help give nutrients to the plants that are grown in the container on top. Okay, so you’re not going to feed your whole family with this system, but it’s a great way of livening up your space, growing organic herbs in your kitchen and getting a new pet fish while you’re at it.
Is there anything that pallets can’t be used to create? This vertical pallet garden again shows a fantastic way of creatively growing food in a very small area. Best of all, pallets can normally be collected for free! Just pack with earth and plant away.
However you choose to approach it, there are many solutions for growing food regardless of how much space you have available to you. To get the best benefits of growing food in a tiny space, encourage your friends to do the same so you can grow different crops and trade! Even if you’re only able to find room for a couple of plants, it all helps to bring more sustainable, organic and locally sourced food into your life.