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Growing vegetables and other edible plants can help you slash your grocery bill, eat more nutritiously, and assist the environment. And best of all, you don’t need a large plot of land to do it. All of these delicious plants will thrive indoors.

indoor gardening window sill

Carrots, kale, and dill. (image: Brianna Prevett)

1. Carrots Can Grow on Your Window Sill

Carrots can grow from seeds in window boxes or pots that are just a foot and a half wide and deep. Window boxes are perfect, because their position will give the seeds plenty of light. The sun will dry out the soil though, so remember to water it regularly to keep it moist. A layer of peat moss will help here.

Your carrot seeds should start sprouting in two weeks, and will be ready for harvest once they measure about 0.75 inches across the top. Toss your fresh carrots through salads, stews, and slaws for a hit of vitamins, minerals, and eye-healthy carotenoids.

2. Lemons Love Indoor Pots

It takes some time to grow a lemon tree from seed, but most nurseries sell established dwarf varieties which will give you a head start. These two-year-old trees won’t grow a lot bigger, so you can accurately judge which will suit your space.

Plant yours in a plastic, clay, or ceramic pot that’s slightly larger than the root ball of your tree. Position it in a bright space which receives eight to 12 hours of sunlight daily. Places that stay between 55 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit are perfect. Water your lemon tree regularly to keep the soil moist, and spritz the leaves with a water bottle to keep them looking their best.

It takes six to nine months for a lemon to ripen enough to provide the Vitamin C and antioxidants which will help you fight cancers, reduce inflammation, and lower your risk of heart disease.

3. Mushrooms Thrive in Dark Places

Not all edible plants enjoy sunlight. If your home is a bit dark and gloomy, mushrooms are the perfect choice. Mushroom growing kits have all the instructions and equipment you need to get started.

If you’re looking for a cheaper solution, you can simply inoculate some straw with mushroom spores, known as mycelium, and store it in a laundry basket. The mushrooms will grow through the baskets holes. It’s a good idea to put a plastic bag or cardboard box around your laundry basket until it’s completely colonised with mycelium.

Whichever method you pick, you’ll have flavorful mushrooms rich in vitamin C, antioxidants, and cancer-fighting elements before you know it.

4. Go Mini with Microgreens

If space is an issue, microgreens are perfect. These small leafy greens and herbs work in a range of meals and even offer more nutrients than their full-grown peers. Plant a variety of seeds in a seedling tray or shallow pot, and position them on a sunny windowsill. They’ll germinate in around three to five days if you keep the soil moist. After three weeks or so, you’ll have a range of microgreens which can be eaten straight away, or stored in the fridge for up to five days.

So don’t let a lack of space squash your dreams of growing your own vegetables. These veggies and edible plants love life in the great indoors.

 

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Cate Morgan-Harlow

Cate Morgan-Harlow is an all arounder, writing about how-to, DIY, and design with gusto. She is a shadowy figure with a mysterious past.