Indoor Gardening for Beginners
This book is for all the people who have always wished to have a garden of their own. But perhaps, due to lack of space outdoors, or maybe a lack of chance to get an opportunity to start gardening, they have not managed to start up on this soul satisfying activity, until now.
Somewhere in the 1850s up to the 1900s, children were encouraged in schools to grow gardens under the close supervision of their teachers. That is because it was taken for granted that there was plenty of land outside, where gardening could be taught to the tiny tots, and thus, they could learn all about the delights of gardening outbuildings, at a very young age. For many of these children, gardening became a pleasant activity when they grew up, because they were so used to doing things in the garden, since childhood.
But as time went by, and school curriculums changed, teachers began to concentrate more on teaching children ABC's and 123's, rather than encouraging them in outdoor activities. Outdoor activities began to be restricted only to physical training classes and exercises and gardening took a backseat.
The Right Soil for Your Plants
Even though gardeners are using a number of new different mediums, to grow plants, like water – hydroponics – soil has always been the first and preferred medium in order to grow plants. Many people get confused in the initial stages of gardening, because they do not know anything about the right soil, and because so many people out there keep telling them – confusing them – about particular plants needing special soil mixtures, that they get really scared off. Wouldn't you?
Pots, Pans, and Saucers…
We are lucky that in the 21st century, we are not restricted to our choice of material for plant containers, in constricted places. We have our choice of a large number of materials, going back to metal, clay, and wood, as our ancestors did, millenniums ago to modern equivalents like plastic, Styrofoam, and anything else of which you can think.
Somebody just told me that glazed pottery as a container was definitely not a good choice, especially when I was using it as an attractive receptacle for plants in my drawing room. Well, let me tell you my view about porous pottery and glazed pottery. In places, where you planted your plants in greenhouses, where the atmosphere was moist 24/7, a porous pot was of course the best choice, because it would allow the moisture to be removed freely from the soil.
However, when you are living in a room, where central heating is the norm of the day, humidity is rare, you may find the air conditioner running and one does not know what the temperature is going to be, tomorrow, inside the room, a glazed container is going to be the best solution for too rapid an evaporation, which is otherwise going to take place, the moment you water the plant, in a hot, muggy, and humid overheated atmosphere.
Remember that when you are looking for a container in which to grow your plant, let your imagination roam free. I have seen plants growing in coconut shells, old boots, bathtubs, cans, and even pottery containers, which were glazed inside and outside. The last containers provided the plants with soil, which kept moist for a longer period of time. And that is why these plants survived, even though they were neglected unforgivably for a while.
Do you know that this is one topic that many gardeners do not bother about? I know about an agriculturalist who was given a challenge by the other professors in his college to prove to them that drainage was an important part of agricultural systems.
For this they gave him a plot of land, where the land was waterlogged, marshy, and nothing but semi aquatic plants and bushes grew there. The first time he saw that land, his reaction was guns loaded, but ammunition was blanks. But then he saw that the land had been waterlogged, which his fellow professors had not noticed.
He immediately began draining these marshy areas, with the help of tiles. The excess water was drained away from the soil, running away through the channels of tile, to other parts of the land. That soil not being waterlogged, absorbed the water happily.
Here are just some tips and techniques, which you may want to begin gardening indoors, right now. You may ask, why I did not say anything about watering the plants. This is because the necessity of watering a plant is going to depend largely upon the characteristic of the plant species and family.
You do not water succulents very often. In the summer, you need to water your plants, in the morning or in the evening. You do not water your plants in the hot afternoon. In the winter, you can sprinkle some water on top of the plants, when you think they need it.
The moment the soil’s surface looks dry, it is time for you to water your plants. Just add enough water, to saturate the soil. Do not allow it to be waterlogged. The moment you see a little bit of water escaping from the hole for drainage in the pot, that is that. Stop immediately.
Remember that proper drainage means that you are never going to overwater your plants. So you can do a little bit of liberal watering. Moisture evaporates quicker from smaller pots when compared to larger ones. Temperature is also another factor as well as the weather, wind, and fresh air, are all capable of absorbing moisture rapidly. So whenever the soil looks dry, water your plant.
Do not ever use hot water. Since when did Mother Nature give her plants a hot water shower or bath? Use a sprinkler to give the leaves of your plants a bit of a shower, while applying some water to the roots. This gets rid of all the dust. The sprinkling can be done at least two times in a week. You can use the spray pump, where a fine mist can be sprayed over the leaves in a regulated manner. Also this spray pump means that if you have your plant in your living room, you are not going to be spraying your curtains, sofa, walls, carpets, and other furnishings with water from a sprinkler!
Do not ever get into the habit of little and often, in the matters of watering your plants. That means you are just applying some water to the surface of the soil, whenever you think of it. Again, I say, poor little plants. You have just wet the surface of the soil, without even bothering to check up, whether the soil underneath is dry or not? Many a time, it is going to be dry. So how do you expect your little plant to quench its thirst?
So my gardener friend, welcome to the world of gardening, and may you have many enjoyable hours among your plants.
Long Live and Prosper!