Urban gardening: tips for the growing season (Google / BC Local News)

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Urban gardening: tips for the growing season

Vancouver, BC (June 9, 2008 ) – Many Canadians are joining the Real Food Movement by growing their own fruits and vegetable in small city spaces with the help of Hellmann’s® Urban Gardens. Thoughtful planning and a sunlit window or balcony is all an urbanite needs to create a seasonal source of fresh food close to home. Locally grown crops have a higher nutritional value and make meals taste even better. Get started with these helpful tips from Hellmann’s and Evergreen.

Space to Spare: Determine where your edible urban garden will live and how much space can be spared. Is it a windowsill garden or backyard patio? This will help with seed selection, number of veggies planted and the purchase of containers and pots.

Let the Sun Shine In: The amount of sun exposure is also a key factor to planning any garden. Read the packages of the seeds you purchase or talk to a gardening specialist about how much sun your garden will see during the summer to determine what will grow to delicious perfection.

Container Gardens: Any sort of container will do as long as it has drainage holes. Small annuals, like herbs & vegetables, can grow in containers less than 3-litres in size; larger vegetables like tomatoes and cucumbers need at least 10-litre containers.

Get Dirty: In order to make the garden a success, healthy soil is very important. Commercially prepared potting mixes from a local flower or garden shop is a good starting point. Adding organic fertilizer or compost is also an essential consideration for your urban garden.

Sowing the Right Seeds: maximize your garden space with the right veggies – climbers like vine cucumbers and snap beans will work well if you have a lot of vertical space. Tomatoes and salad varieties like lettuce are a perfect choice for balconies and patios. Herbs such as oregano, parsley, rosemary and mint are ideal for the small windowsill kitchen garden.

For more information on the Hellmann’s Urban Gardens and how to join the Real Food Movement visit http://www.hellmanns.ca. Here you can check out the discussion board where you can talk to avid gardeners and advocates of real food.


Published by

Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.