Outdoor and Environmental EducationOutreach Creating an Edible Garden → Benefits and Challenges

Benefits and Challenges

Benefits of Container Gardens  

The perfect solution for students and teachers interested in integrating gardening into instruction because container gardens—

  • can be used when space is limited;
  • can be placed to take advantage of sunny places that aren't suitable for raised beds or in-ground gardens;
  • are suitable for almost any vegetable, herb, or annual flower;
  • are ideal for Spring and Fall planting when school is in session;
  • need little or no weeding;
  • are portable and can be removed or re-purposed if the school/teacher/parent wishes to discontinue their use;
  • can be easy for beginner gardeners; and
  • can be used incrementally—schools can decide to start small and add containers as space, interest, and budgets permit.


Challenges of Container Gardens 

Keep in mind container gardens require—

  • sufficient and consistent watering too much will damage the plants and too little can kill them; 
  • 4-6 hours of direct sun for Spring/Fall season vegetables and 6-8 hours of sun for summer vegetables;
  • correct growing medium—a good quality soilless* mixture and compost (not soil dug from nearby ground); and
  • moving—you may need to be able to move your container garden: It may be heavy and difficult to move when filled with growing medium.