As our world becomes more urbanized, new methods of gardening are becoming available for city-dwellers. Whether you plant simple window boxes or turn your backyard into a full-fledged vegetable garden-there are a number of options for urban gardeners.
But what IS the difference between urban and rural gardening? The same general basics apply, regardless of where you put your garden. Good soil, proper sunlight, and adequate amounts of water are needed. However, there is a difference in the types of plants you can grow in an urban setting. Urban gardens obviously have less space, so if you are using containers to grow your plants, you will need to choose varieties of plants that have shallower roots (see below links). If you want to make the most of your garden you can also try "high-yield" gardening, which involves growing plants that produce a large yield in a small space. This can also help the environment, as fewer resources are needed!
"Green Roofing" is a method of urban gardening that uses your rooftop as a garden and is a great way to make use of precious space. Not only does "green roofing" beautify your roof, it also decreases the amount of solar heat your house absorbs, saving you energy on air-conditioning in the hot summer months. Be sure that before you "green" you roof, you make sure it's sturdy enough to hold all of the plants, and that you have the time to devote to watering and maintaining plants.
Container Gardening is another way to create an urban garden. Things like old tires, soda bottles, and even kids' swimming pools can be used to grow plants. Be creative! Container gardening gives you the option of bringing your plants inside in the colder months and monitoring the amount of sunlight your plants receive.
Urban Rainwater Collection. Let's face it, water is expensive in the city! However, there are options for saving money as well as helping the environment by reducing the amount of water you use. Rain barrels are a great way to collect water to feed your urban garden. Or, you can try creating a catchment system.
Health benefits to planting indoors
Plant guides for urban gardeners
How to grow an indoor herb garden