Reasons You Think You Can’t Grow a Garden

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There are many reasons people think they can’t grow a garden. From being expensive, to taking too much time, to not having enough room, there are so many excuses why you think you can’t grow a garden. But there are so many benefits to gardening. Today, I’m here to de-bunk most of those excuses. If you really want to grow a few vegetables, you can usually find a way.

Think you can't grow a garden-Yes you can!
Think you can’t grow a garden?-Yes you can!

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But I don’t have any room to grow a garden

Try growing a container or two

First, many people say they can’t garden because they don’t have enough room. If you have a small outdoor area, you can usually grow a pot or two of lettuce on the balcony or back deck, even if the area doesn’t receive much sun. I explain how to grow lettuce and share my favorite varieties in this post.

There are also many varieties of tomatoes and cucumbers that do well in containers. Look for varieties that are compact for best results. (I am trying Red Robin tomatoes this year in a container.) Some stores nowadays even sell tomato plants (and occasionally other veggies) in containers so all you have to do is take the container home and sit it in a sunny area. Keep it watered and wait for the harvest.

My favorite containers to grow plants in are EarthBoxes. These even have a self-watering reservoir to make the task of watering much easier.  I have had my EarthBoxes for quite a few years, and they still work great. I’ve actually mistreated them, since they have been left outside all winter. Yet they’ve never let me down. I often grow lettuce in them so I can move the plants to a shadier area when the weather gets hot. (See this post for more information on how to grow lettuce.)

I also like to grow carrots in containers. Here in North Carolina, it can be difficult to grow carrots in our clay soil. But since you are adding loose potting soil to the boxes, the carrots don’t have to struggle to push through the soil while growing. They are also much easier to pull out of the box than out of the ground.

Recently though, I purchased some grow bags. These are inexpensive fabric pots that work great to grow a few vegetables and flowers in. I purchased a 5 pack and currently they are all being used to grow vegetables in addition to my regular garden. Grow bags are cheaper than Earthboxes, but you do have to water them more frequently.

Tomatoes can be grown in pots on your patio.
Tomatoes can be grown in containers on a patio.

Do you have a community garden near you?

Another option for apartment dwellers is to see if your area has a community garden. You can usually rent space in a community garden for a reasonable cost. Most allow you to choose what you want to grow as well. For more information on community gardens, check out the American Community Gardening Association’s website.

Indoor hydroponics

A third option if you truly want to grow something is an AeroGarden. An AeroGarden uses the hydroponic method of growing vegetables and herbs indoors. While you obviously can’t grow a huge garden in one of these, even growing a few fresh herbs or a cherry tomato plant will bring lots of fresh flavor to your cooking.

I have had an AeroGarden (similar to this one) for years and it is such fun to grow a few things during the winter. I grew some really great lettuce in mine one year. While I don’t use mine all the time, I often pull it out in the fall or early winter to grow some fresh herbs to brighten my winter dishes. I have had my AeroGarden for almost 10 years now, and it still works very well.

Grow Microgreens

Even if you only have a tiny bit of space, if you really want to grow something, you can grow microgreens. They are highly nutritious and so easy to grow. I share my best tips for growing microgreens in this post.

But I don’t have time to garden?

If you don’t think you’ve got time to garden, there are many low maintenance vegetables that will help you put a little bit of fresh produce in your yard. If you start small with a 4′ x 4′ square foot garden, you can grow an amazing amount of produce.

I planted the entire 4′ x 4′ garden in less than 30 minutes one afternoon. Whose says you don’t have time to garden?

But if a 4′ x 4′ garden seems too much, you can grow a few heads of leaf lettuce or a tomato in a pot on your patio or in your yard. Or try a few herbs to add some flavor to your dishes. With the exception of checking the plants for water and picking the produce, you really don’t have to do much to maintain a few veggies in a container. And even a little fresh, homegrown produce is better than no homegrown produce.

Gardening costs too much

Another reason many people think they can’t grow a garden is that it costs too much. An yes, you can spend an insane amount of money growing a garden if you choose to. However, I’ll make a case that gardening can be done relatively cheaply, especially if you are willing to be resourceful.

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If you want to grow a container garden, many times you can find an old pot or two that is large enough to grow a tomato plant or a few heads of lettuce. You can even use old nursery pots from shrubs and trees if you have a few laying around. The important thing with using old containers is to be sure you clean them thoroughly and that they have drainage holes at the bottom. If there aren’t drainage holes, be sure you can drill some into the bottom so that the vegetables don’t become water logged.

If you have any old bricks or cinder blocks, you can easily make a small raised garden bed to grow a few veggies in. And scrap lumber can be used to build a raised bed if the lumber hasn’t been treated with chemicals. For more information on growing vegetables in raised beds, check out this post.

No idea where to start gardening

If you have no idea how to start gardening, I’ve got you covered! There are lots of posts on my blog to help you. For instance I’ve got posts on:

Garden plan freebies

And if you still think you can’t grow a garden or you are having trouble getting started, feel free to comment below or send me an email at [email protected] {dot} com with your gardening problems. I’m always looking to help out fellow gardeners and I would love to help you learn to grow something too.

Yes you can grow a garden.
Yes, you really can grow a garden.

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