Gardening for Beginners: Containers Make It Easy

Want to start gardening but don’t have the space or time to maintain rows of flower beds or vegetable patches? Grow plants in containers like pots, boxes and half barrels instead! For the beginner, container gardening is a great way to get started with gardening.

Why Should I Try Container Gardening?

Not only does container gardening save space, but it gives you more flexibility than a traditional backyard gardening. You can put the plants anywhere from a sunny kitchen window to a rooftop garden. On cold nights you can bring them inside and move them to shady areas during the heat of the day.

It’s also versatile — you can grow plants that require different types of soils right next to each other. It’s also a good method to get the whole family involved, as plants are easily accessible to children, the elderly and people with mobility limitations. Best benefit of all? There’s no heavy equipment or gardening tools required!

Now that you know why you should start with small, potted plants, here’s what you can grow this season:


Early spring is a good time to plant vegetables in a container. Many varieties of tomatoes grow well in this setup. Just make certain you stake the plants or use a tomato cage. Beans also grow well in boxes or pots, but you’ll need to provide a trellis for the vines to climb. Root vegetables including beets, radishes or onions also flourish in the spring.


Mint, basil, thyme, rosemary, cilantro, chives – whatever variety you like, just about any herb can successfully grow in small spaces. If you choose to put two varieties of herbs in the same soil, be certain they don’t compete for space. For example, mint is quite invasive and may root out another plant.

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Flowers look lovely when scattered around your house. Group them into an arrangement on your front porch or placed in hanging baskets on your deck. Petunias are simple easy to grow and actually thrive in self-contained spaces. Geraniums and marigolds are also good choices.

When planting flowers in a container, create an arrangement using several varieties. Put a taller plant in the center and surround it with filler plants. Then, plant vine-like flowers around the edges so they spill over the edges of your pot.

A Note About Soil

Don’t use soil from outside in your pots and boxes, since it tends to pack down when watered. Invest in a good potting soil instead. To ensure you have the right materials, read the bag’s label and look for ingredients like perlite, peat moss, lime and aged bark.

Gardening at home is a rewarding activity that’s not as hard you might think. If you’re a beginner, try your hand at container gardening before moving onto more in-depth home gardening projects.

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