Here's all you need to know about bag gardening

Here's all you need to know about bag gardening

The balcony in your apartment can be easily turned into a mini garden if you set it up smartly. Almost any spot in the house -be it windowsills, entrances or corridors -can be made to bloom with choicest plants and right planters. For those who have busy schedules, bag gardening is an easy way to grow vegetables or flowers. "It is comparatively a new trend in garden ing. In Kolkata, I have rarely seen these bags because the awareness and conse quent consumption do not encourage trade and stock of the same. However, in Bangalore and Mumbai, these are being used extensively . Growing bags come in really handy if you are plan ning to start a kitchen garden. They are light-weight and economical too. You can grow vines like pumpkins or gourds easi ly. Unlike tins or other metal containers, they do not heat up and are waterproof. They can hold a lot of soilless medium easily. You can also use soil in them. In fact, veggies grow well if there is a good part of soil in the potting mix," informs Nupur Khaitan, a city-based landscape design consultant. Easily available online, these bags are ideal for balcony or small gardens, where space is precious. "Growing bags are made of polypropylene and some of them are UV treated. Another variety comes with an inner lining of fine dust of coco peat, in which you can directly grow vegetables," Nupur adds.But then, if time permits, you can even make your own growing bag. Just add some coco peat or potting mix in a bag that is large enough to grow your plants. Make sure to leave plenty of edging to hold the peat compost mixture in place.

HOW TO USE GROWING BAGS

Decide where you want to grow your plants. Place the bags in an area that receives enough sunlight for the vegetables you wish to grow.

Keep the bags well-watered. The plastic often heats up the coco peat mix, so keeping the soil moist is very important.

Add nutrients occasionally, as plants quickly absorb nutrients that are already in the mix.Adding tea compost is a good idea.

Prop up tall plants with sticks.But be careful not to tear the bags at the bottom.

HOW TO PREPARE AND PLANT

You must loosen the contents of the bag by shaking it properly.

Shape the bag into a low mound, making sure compost is evenly spread.

Pierce the base of the bag for drainage and cut out the premarked planting squares.

Scoop out a little peat-compost mix from each square, leaving a hole that is big enough to place the roots. Put one sapling in each hole and refill it with compost around it.

The root should remain just below the top surface of the soil.

Water well.

WHAT TO GROW

Shallow-rooted plants grow best in bags. Good choices would be tomatoes, capsicum, brinjals, cucumbers, beans, lettuce, herbs and flowers.

Plant two to three saplings in each bag.

Alternatively , cut a long panel at the top of the bag and sow salads in rows across the width of the bag.

Lettuce and basil can be sown from spring to late summer.

AFTERCARE

When top-heavy crops are about 8 inches tall, push a cane into the bag next to each plant. Tie the plant to the cane. This will prevent the plants from toppling over.

Keep the compost moist. When flowers appear, feed plants such as brinjals, tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers with high potash fertiliser. This will ensure healthy fruits. When crops die, split the bag open and recycle the compost as a soil conditioner in the garden.

Bagged potting soil is pasteurised to kill weeds, which makes gardening easier.


Most vegetables grown in gardens require full sunlight but leafy veggies such as lettuce enjoy partial shade.

Tomatoes will not set fruit properly if not grown in full sun.

Two inches from the top of the plastic bag should be kept free so that soil doesn't spill out over the edges.

Water the soil till it seeps from the drainage holes at the bottom of the bag -indicating that the soil is evenly moist, but not muddy .

Source : https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/kolkata/-heres-all-you-need-to-know-about-bag-gardening/articleshow/60155331.cms

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