Care for Crops in Containers

With a little care you can grow a wide range of edibles in pots


You can grow a surprisingly wide range of crops in pots, troughs or growing bags – pretty much anything goes, except for perhaps cauliflowers, Brussels or broccoli! And most plants are happy in a good-quality multi-purpose compost.

If you’ve grown fruit and veg in pots smaller than around 45cm (1½ft) diameter, you might have found they haven’t thrived as you’d hoped, or have needed more watering and feeding than usual; in future just pick bigger pots so crops have plenty of room and good capacity to hold water and nutrients. Yellowing leaves and sickly plants are often a symptom of being tightly constricted in small containers.

Drying out is common, so evenly water your plants. Diseases such as blossom end rot can be caused by environmental problems like where they’re situated and how they’re fed and watered. Make sure pots aren’t crowded out, stuffed by a wall or hedge, in a rain shadow or not getting as much sun.