We get asked this question (or some variation of it) a lot on our Facebook page or during events.
Can I grow plants at home?
The question usually refers to whether they can grow the plant INSIDE their homes.
The short answer is yes.
But life isn't as simple as that. If it was, we wouldn't be asking this question at all ;-)
Plants are living things. Living things live within an ecosystem. An ecosystem deals with relations of organisms to one another and to their physical surroundings.
*end of biology lesson*
What I'm trying to get at is that like humans, there are certain elements plants need to grow.
For us humans, those would be air, food and water, clothing, and shelter.
On a side note, in the wild, plants' shelter are the older / bigger plants around them. In the natural order of things, the seeds drop to the ground from the tree/plant. As it grows, the original (mature) plant protects the small plant by acting as its shade and shield from mother nature.
If you're growing plants at home, here's what you do to ensure you provide the necessities.
Among the 3 factors here, I didn't dwell too much on the other two because we have other articles on those already.
Sunlight is a prerequisite for photosynthesis. That's the plant's process for making food. If the plant can't make its food, it can't eat. And if it goes hungry, it will die.
As long as the plant receives the amount of sunlight it needs, you will have no problem.
If the plant is in a garden, then sunlight is usually not a problem. But most people in Metro Manila don't have the luxury of having gardens. They only have windows or small balconies.
What we tell them is as long there is sunlight, there’s an opportunity for you to grow some plants. Not all plants, definitely. But at least you have something to choose and work on.
If the area is facing either East or West (sunrise and sunset), and don’t have stuff blocking it, it will work fine.
Otherwise, we don't recommend putting them there unless you can move them where there is sunlight. Think of parking lots, your condominium's penthouse. Those areas are perfect.
We have a guide that you can download for your reference too. It tells you how much sun (and other things) your plant needs to grow.
Side note: If you look at the plant cards, you'll realize why we recommend basil when people say they don't have a garden. It's because among our plant offerings, it has the least amount of sunlight needed, making it the easiest to grow.
We talked about this in another post - about watering twice daily. Plants need water the same way humans can't live without it.
If the plant is in a pot and is inside your home, their roots won't grow too deep. That is actually the primary function of the root system -- to expand and find sources of water and nutrients.
So make sure that you water your plants twice daily. Preferably in the morning and late in the afternoon. It's not a hard and fast rule, but that's a great guideline to start with.
Also, avoid over-watering. It can cause a lot of plant diseases and, in some instances, kill your plants.
We recommend adding some fertilizer to your plants every 14 days. If you want to know, the acronym to memorize is NPK.
Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium.
These are the 3 essential nutrients your plant needs.
If you're using our fertilizer, crush 3-5 pellets and sprinkle them around your plant. Do that before watering them that day. Do that every 14 days.
The secret to growing your own plants and organic food at home is to provide your plants with enough sunlight, water, and nutrients it needs.