Ultimate Guide To Indoor Vegetable Gardens
Indoor vegetable gardens are great for a variety of reasons. They’re perfect for nature lovers who have little yard space for an outdoor garden or for those looking to keep their gardening habit going during the winter months.
As convenient as indoor gardening is, there are tips and suggestions you should follow to ensure that your indoor vegetable garden looks its best and maintains an optimal growing environment for your vegetables.
Our senior horticulturist, Matt Kostelnick, at Ambius answered some of the most frequently asked questions about indoor vegetable gardening. Read more below:
Indoor Vegetable Garden
Can you plant vegetables indoors?
Yes! If you choose to garden indoors, we recommend you begin growing vegetables indoors and then during the spring/summer months, moving your vegetables outdoors.
If it’s warm during the day in the spring, you can bring your plants outside during the day and then move them indoors at night.
Can you plant fruit indoors?”
Yes, it is possible to grow fruit indoors. If you want to grow lemon or orange trees, you’ll have to grow two greens in order for them to cross-pollinate. Touch the flowers on one tree and then use the pollen using a cotton swab to touch the flowers on the other tree.
Which vegetables work best for gardening indoors?
We suggest growing tomatoes, peppers, peas, carrots or lettuce. Again, we recommend growing the plants indoors during the winter months and then bringing them outdoors once it gets warmer outside.
What are microgreens?
Microgreens are tiny, edible leafy greens that grow to about 2 inches in height. Some examples of microgreens are:
- Beet greens
Can you grow microgreens indoors?
Yes. You can use grow-lights or fluorescent lights. We even suggest using CFI light bulbs, especially if you have a sunny and warm windowsill, particularly a windowsill facing south or east.
When do you harvest microgreens?
Microgreens have a short growing season because they are so small. After planting, it takes about 2-3 weeks for a harvest to appear. Once the microgreens are fully grown, you can trim your harvest with scissors. It’s recommended you cut just above the soil line.
Can you regrow foods with water? How do you regrow food with water?
Yes, you can. Follow these instructions to re-grow lettuce for example with water.
Cut the leaves off of an old head of lettuce, leaving a 1-2 inch stem.
Place the stem in a glass with an inch of water.
Place the glass near a sunny window or under artificial light.
In 3-4 days, you should see the stem sprout more lettuce leaves. This can be done with green onions and celery as well.
Do vegetables need light to grow indoors?
Light is very important when it comes to indoor vegetable gardening. We recommend placing your garden near an east or south window. A west window is okay but it might get too hot so be cautious..
How much space do I need for an indoor vegetable garden?
You don’t need much space for an indoor garden. If you want to start small, we suggest placing your garden on a windowsill that is 2 x 1 ½. If you want a more robust garden, you can purchase trays and gardening racks, which can be purchased at home and gardening centers or ordered through online retailers.
What temperature should my indoor garden grow in?
Temperatures between 70-72 °F are best. But a good rule of thumb is, whatever is comfortable for humans, is comfortable for plants. The exceptions are leafy greens. They can tolerate cooler temperatures, so if you have a room in your home or apartment that is cooler in the fall/winter/spring, try growing leafy greens in there.
Does my indoor garden need humidity?
Humidity is important for indoor gardens because it prevents leaf drop and browning leaf tips. It’s recommended your indoor gardening space maintain a humidity level of 40%-50%.
Do indoor vegetable gardening kits work? Where can I find indoor vegetable gardening kits?
Yes they do. You can find kits at home and gardening centers or buy them from online vendors.
Indoor Herb Garden Questions
What is an indoor herb garden?
A garden that grows herbs.
How do I grow an indoor herb garden?
It’s similar to growing indoor plants.
- Place your garden near a south or east-facing window. You may also use growing lights if you are unable to use natural light.
- Choose a growing medium, preferably organic growing mix.
- Water enough so that the soil is moist but the roots aren’t soggy. If you are growing herbs that have different watering needs, we suggest growing them in separate containers.
What herbs can I plant in my indoor garden?
We suggest rosemary, chives, basil, cilantro and parsley.
What temperature should my indoor herb garden be at?
We suggest the temperature be set similar to the temperature in an indoor vegetable garden, so around 70-72 °F. Once the temperature outside reaches about 65 °F, you may bring your herbs outside and then bring them in when the temperature drops, typically at night time.
If I don’t use all my herbs at once, how can I preserve my herbs?
Preserving herbs is a great way of making use of your harvest all year-round. You can place your herbs in ice cube trays and fill them with water or olive oil and let freeze and use when necessary. Or, you can preserve herbs in jars of salt.
Indoor Gardening General Questions
What is indoor gardening?
Indoor gardening is simply growing plants, vegetables or herbs in an indoor setting.
How do you garden indoors?
- Determine what type of plants you’ll want to harvest. This often comes down to matching plants to the indoor setting of your garden.
- Find a location in your home/apartment that will provide you with sufficient lighting. If you don’t have an east or south-facing window, we suggest buying HID light bulbs.
- Choose a container that will allow excess water to drain at the bottom. This will prevent the soil from getting soggy and the roots rotting.
- Determine what kind of growing medium you want to use. Soil bought at home and gardening centers works just fine.
- Once the seeds are planted, make sure you know how to water the plants you are growing. As a rule of thumb, always check the soil prior to watering to prevent over or under watering. If you have a saucer under your container, make sure to empty it regularly so the soil does not absorb more water than it needs to.
What supplies do you need for gardening indoors?
We recommend the following tools for your indoor garden:
- Plants- already grown or seeds
- Watering can
- Saucer to hold water
- Lighting – natural or artificial
Indoor Plant Design
Ambius can help you bring the benefits and beauty of indoor plant designs to your office with our indoor office plants. Our designers work with you to make your office space welcoming and enjoyable for employees and guests. For more information on our indoor plant design, fill out our online contact form or call us at 888-701-5189.