Rather thanwaiting for summer to come around, eat fresh vegetables and herbs now bygrowing your own delicious garden inside!
1. Fill a three-inch pot with a moist seed-starterpotting mixture, then sow two tomato seeds in each pot. Plant the seedsapproximately a quarter of an inch deep.
2. Cover the pot with a plastic bag and place it in awarm room to germinate. Remove the bag once sprouts appear, usually within oneto two weeks of planting.
3. Set the pot in your window garden where it receivesat least six hours of sunlight a day. Water the tomato plant when the surfaceof the soil begins to feel dry.
4. Transplantthe tomatoes to a six- to eight-inch pot once the seedlings have grown theirthird set of leaves. Fill the pot with a moist potting mix, then plant onetomato seedling per pot to the same depth as in its nursery pot.
5. Insert a three-foot tall, quarter-inch diameterwooden dowel behind the tomato plant after transplanting. Push the dowel inuntil it touches the bottom of the pot.
6. Water the tomato plant when the soil surface beginsto feel dry. Water until the excess moisture begins draining from the bottom ofthe pot. Empty the drip tray attached to the pot after each watering.
7. Fertilize the tomato plants every two weeks with awater soluble plant food. Follow label instructions for exact applicationamounts.
8. Tie the tomato plant to the dowel as it grows tohelp support the vines and fruit. Tie the main stem to the dowel every four tofive inches along its length with soft cotton twine.
9. Rotate the tomato plant in the window every two tothree days so that all sides receive equal amounts of light. Rotating the plantalso helps dislodge pollen once the tomato begins flowering, aiding pollinationand fruit set.
1. For bestresults use only a ripe avocado. Carefully halve the fruit and rinse the pit.Pat dry and let sit overnight in a warm, dry spot. The next day, peel off anyof the parchment-like skin from the pit.
2. Place the pit with the base (the wider end) toward the bottom in a 7-inchpot full of loamy, rich organic soil. Make sure the tip is above the soil,exposed to light for proper germination. Water thoroughly.
3. If your apartment is dry, place a clear plastic cup over the exposed seedtip to serve as a mini-greenhouse. Though the plant does not need direct lightto germinate, placing the pot on a sunny windowsill will speed growth.
4. Continue to water every week and make sure the soil doesn’t dry outcompletely. The pit may take over a month to germinate so be patient.
5. When the sprout emerges and grows to about 4 inches, add another layer oforganic soil to cover the pit completely. This not only protects the seed, butalso any roots that may poke through the soil in search of nourishment.
6. Once the plant starts growing, it may remind you of the story “Jack andthe Beanstalk.” You can watch the plant grow tall for a year (supportedwith a wooden rod) and let it branch on its own, or make a decision to prune itand force it to branch, making a sturdier plant. If you choose to prune, it’sbest to trim with a diagonal cut 2 inches from the top. Be careful as you prunenot to cut the main stem more than 1/3 of its height.
7. Continue to add organic compost to fertilize the soil with each pruning andwater as you would a houseplant. Only repot the fast-growing plant when it is 6times taller than the diameter of the pot.
8. Though avocado plants do not bear fruit if grown indoors, you can plantmultiple avocado pits at various times in the same pot for a more interestingarrangement.
1. Use greenonions with healthy, white roots attached to the bulb. Snip off green tops forcooking with a scissors. Leave a little green top on the onion bulb.
2. Plant the entire onion while leaving the short top above ground in a smallpot filled with a loamy, organic potting soil. Make sure your container hasdrainage holes. Put in a sunny windowsill and water once a week or when soilfeels dry to the touch.
3. Harvest new green shoots with scissors to use for cooking or as a tastygarnish. Continue to leave the onion in the soil. With each new growth theonion will taste more potent. After each harvest of onion tops, dress thetopsoil with organic compost. Enjoy green onion tops in stir-fries, omelets,and in sandwiches all winter long
1. Indoorpineapple plants rarely produce flowers and fruit, but their striking foliageadds a touch of exotic to any houseplant collection. All you need to grow oneis the green top you cut off when you eat the pineapple. For best results, usea pineapple that has fresh center leaves at the crown. Lob off the top, rightwhere the crown meets the fruit. Peel off the bottom leaves and clean off the leftoverfruit. Let the top rest a day before planting.
2. Fill a shallow pot with rich, loamy organic soil mixed with a fewtablespoons of well-rinsed coffee grounds. Pineapple grows best in an acidicsoil. Plant the pineapple top so the soil is even with the bottom of the crown.
3. Water well and mist the leaves and crown with a diluted, organic liquidfertilizer. As a member of the Bromeliaceae family, which also includes airplants, pineapple plants take much of their nourishment not from the soil butfrom nutrients in the moist air.
1. Plant a fewgarlic cloves with pointed tip facing up in a pot with loamy organic soil.
2. Place the pot on a sunny windowsill and water regularly like a houseplant.
3. Green garlicky shoots emerge in a week or so. Harvest with a scissors tousing in cooking or as a tasty garnish for soups, salads and baked potatoes.