Gardening Indoors vs. Gardening Outside - Does It Really Make a Difference?
There’s been a recent surge in interest in indoor gardening. Maybe it has something to do with urban families wanting to grow their own foods. Perhaps the convenience of indoor gardening is drawing would-be farmers into experimenting with the indoor growing process. Is there really a difference between growing your food indoors and growing it outside? Actually, there are several differences. Here’s why you may want to consider planting your next indoor garden.
‘Nature knows best’ may be a phrase uttered by outdoor gardeners on the regular, but sometimes nature gets out of hand. Yes, plants need lots of sunlight and water to grow, but what happens when it rains too much? Or, not at all?
It can be difficult to control the growing conditions outdoors, but when you garden inside, you know exactly what your growing conditions are. Using a system like the Click and Grow lets you control the amount of water, light, and nutrients that your plants get every minute of the day.
Growing vegetables on the countertop doesn’t just shelter your plants from harsh conditions but it shelters you and your family as well. Good luck getting the kids to go outside in their pajamas in the rain to get some spinach for this mornings omlette. They’ll be much more likely to help out if they don’t have to get wet or even put on shoes.
If you’ve ever grown an outdoor garden, you’ll know the battle that can rage between you and pests that would eat your plants. Adorable bunnies and deer become your bitter enemies, not to mention the insects that can completely destroy all your hard work by devouring entire plants. Garden rodents and even birds can make outdoor gardening frustrating, especially if you never get to eat the foods you grow because the animals get to them first.
You can keep pests away with chemical and non-chemical methods, but if you’re looking for a low-maintenance, pest-free outdoor garden, you’ll be hard-pressed to find one. And even if you don’t use chemical pesticides on your plants, if your neighbors do, there’s always the chance that sprayed chemicals can drift onto your own garden.
Indoor plants aren’t completely pest-free. Your cat could become your worst nightmare, especially if you grow catnip, but it’s definitely easier to keep Fluffy away from your indoor plants than it is to keep Bambi and Thumper out of your outdoor garden.
If you live in an urban setting, it may be difficult or even impossible to find the space to grow a garden. Container gardening is an option, but only if you have a balcony or patio to keep your plants.
A lack of outdoor space is no problem for an indoor garden. This is why so many people who live in apartments are opting to grow herbs and even vegetables right in their kitchens. The compact nature of a hydroponic-style garden means that it takes less space and less hassle to grow delicious vegetables, herbs, and even fruits. Even small homes can accommodate up to dozens of plants when they’re grown vertically, and the use of grow lights means you don’t even need to keep them near a window.
Getting The Kids Involved
A climate-controlled, self-watering, self-lighting indoor garden basically takes all the work out of growing your food and it makes an easy introduction to teaching young children to grow their own food too. They learn how the right amount of moisture, nutrients, and light contributes to a healthy crop.
As the kids get bigger and understand the basics you can take them outside to show them how to pull cutworms from the underside of five foot tall tomato plants and how tilling the soil with composted manure adds in nutrients. Giving them an introduction indoors is a a great way to spark their curiosity and lay a foundation for growing larger plants outdoors.
If you garden for pleasure, growing your plants outdoors is not a chore, it’s a hobby. You’ll probably enjoy the therapeutic time spent digging in the dirt, pulling weeds, and watering your plants. You may even enjoy the battle between you and the outdoor pests that can plague the typical backyard garden.
However, if you are gardening for food, you may not enjoy having to make time in your busy day to maintain an outdoor garden, or having to fight with the kids to get them to pitch in. This is where indoor gardening definitely has the upper hand. When it comes to convenience, an indoor garden simply can’t be beaten.
A system like the Click and Grow Smart Garden is basically zero-effort and fully automated, so you can ‘set it and forget it.’ And you literally don’t even have to leave the house to get fresh, organic produce, making it easier than ever to eat a healthy, balanced diet all year round.
If you’ve ever tried to go away for a week without watering your outdoor garden, you’ll know the risk you’re taking. You could come home to all dead plants due to a lack of water or pest infestation. Indoor gardens aren’t that needy. You can leave them for much longer periods, up to several weeks, without worrying about your plants.
Thank you to Scott Jenkins for submitting this article!
Scott describes himself as "[a] Dad with two kids I understand how important it is to spend time with them in a constructive way. This seems particularly important today as kids would rather spend their time watching Disney Channel or playing video games when given a choice between TV and playing outside." He writes for architypes.net and tweets at @scottjenkins.