The gardening fun doesn’t have to stop because winter is coming.
If you have potted outdoor plants that you’re worried might get nipped by frost, simply bring them inside. Growing vegetables inside from seed can be a challenge due to a lack of light and space, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are a few options beyond a simple herb garden that can thrive indoors.
Lettuce is great for confined indoor spaces as it has shallow root systems that don’t need large containers.
When you’re selecting your lettuce seeds, keep in mind that certain lettuce varieties grow better in winter light, such as arctic king. You can grow your lettuce in a pot or container that’s at least 6 inches deep. You’ll want to make sure the container has holes in the bottom so your plants won’t get waterlogged, as well as a tray under it to collect water. Fill your pot with well-draining potting soil and fertilizer, and follow the spacing advice on the back of your seed packet. Before your seeds sprout, you’ll need to mist them every day with a spray bottle. Once you have seedlings, water them when the soil feels dry.
You’ll also need a sunny windowsill for your lettuce, as it will need around 12 hours of light a day. If you don’t have a good windowsill with lots of sunlight, you might want to think about buying some grow lights.
To grow microgreens, you’ll need a seedling tray with about 2 inches of potting soil.
Soak your seeds overnight to jumpstart their germination, and then pop them in your soil. Water often to keep the soil moist. Microgreens typically need about four hours of light a day, but might need more in the winter.
The microgreens will be ready to harvest when the first leaves emerge from the sprouts. Use a pair of scissors and cut them just above the soil.
Chili peppers are among the easier fruiting plants to grow indoors. For cayenne peppers, you’ll need light potting soil that drains well.
Give them around 16 hours of light a day under a grow light, or place them in a south-facing window so that they get plenty of sun.
Keep in mind that you won’t need to water your plants indoors as much as you would if they were outside in direct sunlight. So be careful not to overwater them.
Like salad greens, garlic has short roots, and a pot or container that’s around 6 inches deep will do.
Plant your cloves around 3 inches deep and 4 inches apart. Water them until moist, but not wet. Leave them on a sunny windowsill and you’ll have greens in a few weeks.
You can also try getting your garlic started in water before you plant it in soil.