If your property is small or you don’t have a yard, putting in a garden can be a challenge. For those in apartments, the idea of gardening may seem impossible. However, a rooftop garden can both beautify your building and help you eat a better diet!
Start Beet Seeds in a Pot
Beets produce wonderful benefits whether you like the roots or not. In each beet seed are actually several potential plants. Follow the package directions for depth and distance and plant them in a wide, shallow pot. Make sure your beets are moist but not soaked. When they sprout, let the leaves on the first sprouting grow to about the size of a quarter and thin the sprouts at the stem. These little greens are loaded with Vitamin A and yummy in a salad.
If you plan to grow your own greens, make sure you get a salad spinner so you can easily rinse away dirt.
Treat Yourself to Strawberries
There are many berries that are considered superfoods, but often they grow on a bush and require more time than a city summer will allow.Strawberries are quite easy to grow, and if left to spread on their own, will shade out their own weeds.
A raised bed is probably wisest for strawberries; you may have to check under leaves to find the ripest berries. A simple wooden structure on your rooftop garden may be best, lined with weed cloth to keep dirt in and allow water to drain. Once strawberries start to ripen, they’ll draw birds. Make sure you check them each day to pick them before the birds get them.
If you have the chance to place a rooftop garden bed near a wall or a separating fence, it may be possible to hang a net over your strawberries. This will also protect your harvest from birds.
Kale and Chard for Decoration and Vitamin A
These deep green vegetables are quite hearty and can serve as a foil for flowers. You can plant chard in a straight line at the back of a bed; kale will need a bit more space to mound, so set it a bit further in.
Kale and chard will do best in a lower bed. If the wind is too intense, your greens will get battered and the edges of the leaves will develop scars. Pests may feed on them if their borders are damaged.
Create a Spot for Sweet Potatoes
If you’ve got at least a 4 month growing window, you can enjoy a spectacular sweet potato vine that will fill up any rooftop garden bed. At harvest, you get potassium and Vitamin C!
Sandy soil is best for sweet potatoes. Since you need your rooftop garden to be as light as possible while nurturing your plants, sandy soil in your beds is wisest. Just make sure your sweet potatoes get plenty of sun and harvest before frost.
A rooftop garden can provide an oasis where you can relax and enjoy some privacy. If you can’t put up permanent structures to screen the view, you can seed a row of pots with tall sunflowers. At harvest, you can roast the seeds!