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Urban Gardening: How To Grow These Veg And Herbs Indoors

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Urban Gardening: How To Grow These Veg And Herbs Indoors

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When growing vegetables, fruits and herbs you don't always need a garden!

Here's some of the easiest produce to grow indoors and how to do it.

Romally Coverdale

Mon 28 Mar 2022

Here at pebble we love the potential that urban gardening has.

Urban gardens and urban gardeners are full of creative solutions to domestic and communal agriculture (which sits outside of most of the problems of industrial agriculture), and proves that people can grow their own produce no matter where they live.

In this article, pebble's expert team explore the world of indoor urban gardening first hand, detailing the methods, difficulties and positives of growing produce from home - and indoors.

Why growing at home is the future

Currently, in the UK, 1 in 8 households do not have access to a garden and by 2050, two thirds of the global population will live in urban areas, so urban gardening provides a great solution to food security no matter your access level.

In the UK, 1 in 8 households do not have access to a garden and by 2050, two thirds of the global population will live in urban areas

Gardening at home provides multiple health benefits as well as a great contribution to individual wellbeing.

And you don't need a garden.

Here are our favourite ways to grow herbs and veg indoors - no matter how small your space.

Hands cutting sprigs

How To Grow These Veg And Herbs Indoors

Starting equipment checklist:

For most indoor gardening and growing, you will need:

  • Water
  • Appropriate sunlight/LED growing light
  • Starting trays (can be plastic containers, egg cartons or even toilet rolls)
  • Appropriate soil/growing medium/peat free compost
  • Large pot or container
  • Plant stakes and string
Cardboard seed tray with seeds in it

Grow along with pebble...

Why don't you give these veg and herbs a go, growing at home.

Follow us on Instagram this spring as we'll be sharing our growing adventures too.

Why not try a growing kit that makes gardening new and exciting produce so much easier or try growing these veg from scraps.

jar of broccoli seeds on a table

How to grow broccoli microgreens

Broccoli microgreens provide high amounts of vitamin C, magnesium, copper and zinc - packing in a higher quantity of nutrients than a head of broccoli!

Requires:

  • Seed trays/containers
  • Growing medium/soil with water absorption
  • Recommended to use - coconut coir due to its ability to retain moisture and added nutrients
  • Placed in a well ventilated area.

1. Plant the seeds

Fill your seed container with the growing soil, water it and then press it down evenly.

Sprinkle the seeds evenly across the surface of the soil and lightly water again.

close up of broccoli microgreens

2. Apply weight

This can be done by applying another container on top and adding weight - allowing the roots to develop properly.

3. Remove weight

Uncover the broccoli and water every other day.

4. Harvest

After 8-10 days of germination, the plant should be ready to harvest. To harvest, cut the top 2 inches of the plant.

radish microgreens growing on a table

How to grow radish microgreens

Radish microgreens are one of the easiest microgreens to get growing. Packed with vitamins A, B, C, E, and K, as well as calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc, they are a nutrient powerhouse!

Requires:

  • Seed trays/containers
  • Growing medium/soil with water absorption
  • Recommended to use - a coconut coir
  • A well ventilated area

Water every couple of days once germinated.

1. Plant the seeds

Fill your seed container with the growing soil, water it and then press it down evenly.

Sprinkle the seeds evenly across the surface of the soil, leaving some gaps between groups.

2. Cover the seeds

Lightly cover the seeds with growing soil/compost, flatten the surface gently and lightly water. They will germinate after 2 days.

3. Harvest

Harvest after 6 days, or when they are 3 inches tall. To harvest, cut the top 2 inches of the plant.

plate of radish microgreens
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How to grow basil indoors

Fresh basil is one of the easiest herbs to grow and basil is packed with iron, calcium, magnesium, and vitamins C and B6.

Requires:

  • Seed trays/containers
  • Growing medium/soil with water absorption

To grow basil indoors, ideally you need 6 hours of sunlight, needing at least 10 for healthy growth.

The soil needs adequate drainage and soil should be kept moist.

Basil leaves can be dried for a longer lifespan. See below for how to dry them.

1. Plant the seeds

Pack fresh and lightly moist potting mix firmly into container, sprinkle seeds onto and lightly cover with soil - gently pressing down as compact soil will affect the growth.

2. Create the right environment

Place it in a warm window. Rotate the plant to ensure even growth and keep the soil moist.

basil leaves in a plant pot

3. Harvest

After a month, the basil should be fully grown. Harvest by cutting off leaves as needed.

How to dry fresh basil

1. To dry the basil, like any herb, bundle the harvested herb (roughly 3-4 stems) and tie them together with twine.

2. Hang the herbs upside down in a cool and dry space.

3. You can use brown paper to cover the herbs, protecting them from dust, sunlight, and moisture - keeping a consistent environment.

4. After 1-2 weeks, the herbs should be dry enough that they crumble, showing they are ready to be stored.

basil growing in a pot on the window

How to grow tomatoes indoors

For indoor tomato growing, it is best to use 'determinate' varieties of tomatoes as they are more compact as they do not vine.

Requires 6 hours of direct sunlight, needing a relatively warm climate, watering every couple of days, and rotate to ensure even sunlight.

The parts of the tomato plant that can be eaten beyond the fruit are the leaves of the plant itself (rather than the fibrous leaves on the fruit).

1. Plant the seeds

Plant seeds ¼ inch deep in a layer of soilless planting mix in the starting tray, keeping them in a consistent warm place - no need to worry about light.

close up of tomato seedlings

2. Repot

After a month, repot the tomato plant and place them into sunlight.

Be careful to not damage any roots when moving, and plant them so around 1-2 inches of the stems are covered - as tomatoes grow additional roots from the stem.

Water when the soil goes dry, and it is recommended to fertilise them every couple of weeks. Place stakes if and when needed.

3. Harvest

Harvest the tomatoes before they ripen, this prevents pests and maintains quality.

Ideally they should be harvested with the top quarter still green, as they will then ripen in the next few days.

close up of tomatoes on the vine

How to grow chives indoors

Chives are incredibly easy to grow and provide a lot of vitamin C, B6 in addition to magnesium, iron and calcium.

Requires fertile, well-drained soil (ideally compost) that is kept moist - so water frequently

At least 6 hours of sunshine and to be kept at 20-25 degrees Celsius while germinating.

The stem and flowers are both edible, although the flowers are a lot more palatable.

1. Plant the seeds

Lightly press the compost down, water and sprinkle the seeds onto the growing medium.

Cover lightly with more compost and cover to retain moisture and warmth.

2. Uncover

After a week, uncover the chives as they begin to germinate.

3. Harvest

Harvest once 6 inches high, leaving an inch remaining for regrowth.

close up of growing chives

How to drive chives indoors

1. To dry chives, like any herb, bundle the harvested herb (roughly 3-4 stems) and tie them together with twine.

2. Hang the chives upside down in a cool and dry space.

3. You can use brown paper to cover the herbs, protecting them from dust, sunlight, and moisture - keeping a consistent environment.

4. After 1-2 weeks, the herbs should be dry enough that they crumble, showing they are ready to be stored.

5. Or cut them into ¼ inch small pieces and dry them in the sun or the oven.

chives chopped on a wooden chopping board

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