What Can I Grow?
There are so many vegetables,fruits and flowers that you can grow with U-GroIT Automated Garden. Peppers are always a great place to start!
Should I start with seeds or small plants?
Starting with either seeds or small plants will yield great results. Keep in mind the process of starting with seeds will require a longer growing season to produce the fruit or vegetables. Starting with adolescent plants that you can purchase from your big box stores is the fastest way to yield results!
How many Plants or seeds should I put in a pot?
For the 12″ pots, depending on how big your plants say they will get, we recommend putting a maximum of 2 plants per pot and 1-2 in the 8″ pots. Though the large pots have room for 3 large plants, depending on the root systems that develop, the pot can get so packed up with roots that it can stop the water from saturating the pot. So as the season your plants could look fantastic then all of a sudden die because they aren’t getting the necessary water any more because of the root ball.
What should I not grow?
Many plants will grow in the U-GroIT Automated Garden however some need more space to grow because of their root mass. We typically recommend 2-3 vegetable plants per large (12″) pot however if you want to grow zucchini or cucumbers it is best to only plant 1 of those in there. We have grown up to 3 cucumber plants in a large pot and they look great then all of a sudden are dead! The roots took up the entire pot and wouldn’t allow for water to completely saturate it.
Some other plants such as strawberries, will grow in the U-GroIT Automated Garden but your yield will not be fantastic because you need a lot of strawberry plants to produce a lot of strawberries!
Refer to our planting guide on the Learn More page to see what plants don’t play well together.
What type of yield can I expect?
When planting tomatoes or peppers in the U-GroiT Automated Garden, you can expect to get a large range of numbers based on how many plants you put in the pots. For instance, a typical Jalapeño plant that is planted in the U-GroIT Automated Garden will generally produce 60-100 peppers from our experience as long as the conditions are perfect. For tomatoes we have planted 6 cherry tomato plants in the large pots, (2 per pot) and have harvested around 1000 tomatoes in a season! That sounds ridiculous but it is true! AS like the Jalapeños, the tomato plants were given the proper sunlight, fertilizer and the water was never dry. Harvest count will vary with different situations.
What does securing my plants in the garden mean?
Plants love support and as they grow they will need some reinforcement to to keep them from bending and breaking. The U-GroIT Automated Garden pots, both the 12″ and 8″ are designed to hold tomato cages. There are holes in them designed for the cages to easily slide into. Tomato cages are a great means of support but for some cases aren’t enough. We also recommend purchasing garden stakes and placing them in the middle of your pot. As your plant grows you can use garden tape to secure your plants to the stakes and cages. Without securing your large plants like this, they will most likely fail. Take a look at the images on our site and see how all the tall plants are secured by the method described.
Do I need to fertilize my plants?
Yes! Fertilizing your plants is a key part of ensuring great growth and healthy plants. The potting soil you use to plant your plants in contains some fertilizer (depending on what you purchase) but eventually that will be used up. The best way to fertilize your plants is to place a scoop of it in the basin every time you fill it up with water or roughly every 2 weeks. With out fertilization, your plants could suffer from a lack of nutrients and produce sub par yields or even die.
What can I do about the insect larva in my basin?
One of the most effective ways is to buy a gold fish and put it in there! The gold fish feeds off the larva and can thrive in there all season. At the end just pull them out and keep them inside until next year! There are also some chemicals you can purchase that you place in the basin to keep the larva from growing if you’d rather not put a gold fish in there.
Can I grow plants year round?
You can most certainly grow plants year round as long as they can handle the temperature changes. For instance we have some rose bushes planted in some of our test gardens that have been there for a few seasons now.