By Isabel Smith, MS, RD, CDN
I live in New York City and my dream has always been to grow my own plants (big dream, I know!). But in my own interest in finding the best plants that grow in small spaces I thought that it might inspire you to get cozy with your green thumb and grow something. After all it never gets fresher or tastier than that! To inspire you to get growing, I have highlighted a few really easy-to-grow and small plants that you might be able to grow in a space as small as a New York City apartment.
Those of us lucky enough to have space for a window box can choose to grow yummy strawberries instead of other traditional window box plants. All you need to grow them is a sunny window sill and a window box. Plus, the Environmental Working Group just came out with this year’s Dirty Dozen list and strawberries are at the top of list of ickiest conventionally grown fruits and veggies.
If you have a sunny, warm spot that’s big enough for a small round pot, chile’s might be the perfect fit for you. The best part is that all you have to do is plant the seeds inside the chile and in a few months you’ll be growing your very own chiles.
Although you can’t eat them like you can the previous two, succulents are fun, easy to care for and are totally low maintenance (right up my alley!). They can store water in their leaves so they’re easy to care for and don’t require too much attention or watering. All they need is 2-4 hours of direct sunlight and water about every 10 days.
Herbs are another great go-to for gardening in limited space (i.e. inside), and like the strawberries can also be grown inside in a window box. Some of my favorites include mint, basil, and parsley.
This one may require just a little more space, but if you’ve got a sunny corner that stays pretty warm (55-85 degrees Fahrenheit) this may be just for you! And after all, there are so many times where we wish we had lemons to make lemonade or to always have on hand for your anti-inflammatory lemon water concoction in the mornings. You can pot a small lemon tree and get lemons in about 6-9 months. This one may require a little more space than the other plants, but it’s worth checking out if you have the space to do so!
I hope this post gave you some ideas for both a few plants you could eat as well as one that you can admire. Whether you’re a city dweller or live in the country with some more space, having a few plants around is always a good thing!