The Latest Innovations In Vegetable Gardening

Innovations, tools and methods of hobby gardening have increased substantially over the last decade. While wonderful in its own right, new technologies and tools can be confusing and hard to access for the beginner gardener. Here is a broader explanation of these innovations and how they can be accessed by the beginner as well as more experienced gardener.

 Many of these new inventions for gardening were created with ease in mind. For a beginner or a more seasoned gardener, many of these new tools and aids can be used to reduce the workload of gardening while maintaining consistent care.  

Smart pots, for example, not only warn you when it's time to water, but also water your plants for you. The innovation includes a drip irrigation system that automatically waters your plants when they require it. Automatic soil readers, temperature gauges and humidity sensors can aid the gardener from intervening until necessary. 

New methods of growing vegetables


An aquaponic system is a method of growing plants in a symbiotic relationship with fish. The fish will provide waste and eat the nutrients of the plants, and the plants will consume the waste of the fish and clean the water of the tank. The gardener can raise a variety of species of fish depending on preference, koi, shrimp, trout and barramundi are popular options. The gardener can produce salad crops like radishes, lettuce, rocket, and herbs in aquaponic systems, as well as kale and spinach, spring onions, and leeks.

Cold frames

Cold frames are a method of gardening in which the gardener creates a box out of wood and glass to partially bury in the earth. Within the box, the heat from the sun will create a microclimate in which one can grow out of season veggies, fruits, flowers, and herbs. Depending on the size of your cold frame, one can grow a variety of plants throughout the cooler seasons. If utilized indoors, cold frames can be used to create a greenhouse for more tender plants requiring higher levels of humidity and temperature. One will find the greatest levels of success by burying a cold frame in a sunny spot and watering them once a week. Make sure to store them in a cool, dark place when not in use.

Creating cold frames is a great way to increase your crop's growing season, particularly in cold and wet weather. They're sold at garden centres, but most gardeners build their own. You can use old windows, wood or cabinets to make your cold frame. To make the most of the sunlight in a colder environment, a bale of straw for insulation is a good option.

Start with a plan

It is critical to plan well before beginning an innovative garden. Once you have determined your hardiness zone, the amount of sunlight and length of your growing season, you can begin to plan your garden. 

Companion planting is an age-old method of gardening in which you sow plants next to one another that mutually benefit one another. Pairs such as asparagus and strawberries, corn and beans, as well as marigolds and cucumbers are good examples of this. Depending on the combination, these plants can aid one another structurally, can repel harmful insects or provide useful nutrients to benefit both plants. 

By planting flowers in the same area as vegetables and fruits, you can help feed and attract pollinators. Trees such as apples and pears, as well as plants such as tomato and zucchini plants require pollination to produce fruit. By planting flowers nearby, you can create a habit for the butterflies and bees who will help bolster your harvest.  

Pesticides are not necessary in an organic garden or field, since there are beneficial insects and bugs that help fight pests for you. Remember, completely organic farming is much more difficult. If you're growing commercially, organic growing is most likely going to result in lower yields. (Consumers will however usually pay a higher price for organic and pesticide-free goods).

Innovating for the environment

By gardening using both age-old methods and new technologies, one can utilize the best of both the old and the new.  A culture of innovation in the garden will push you to be more creative, but the old techniques such as utilizing rain water and planting with companion varieties will yield predictable results. The gardener can grow fruits, vegetables, and herbs through innovative gardening using many different everyday household items. We've listed some examples below that may be of some help to you if you're interested in growing fruits, vegetables, and herbs through innovative gardening.

Steel buckets

  • A few bottom-hole galvanized buckets are the ideal growing medium for many herbs, be they mint, basil or thyme. You can utilise the herbs in your cooking to boost the flavour of your food or meal. Keep them nearby your kitchen to use in cooking.
  • Alternatively, if you have the space, an galvanized metal bath can also be used. These are a little harder to find, but if you have the space available, it is a unique addition to your innovative and creative garden. You can grow courgettes, tomatoes or potatoes, for example, in this larger space.

Wooden boxes

  • You can use an old wooden fruit or wine box to grow berries, herbs and much more. Strawberries, for example, are a stunningly colorful addition to your garden. These berries grow runners, which are extensions of the main plant with leaves and a new root system. They can be buried in the earth to create a new strawberry plant! 
  • Remember to water regularly and to drill holes for proper drainage, a wooden container is susceptible to rot if left with standing water.  


  • When sowing seeds indoors, one can create biodegradable paper pots using newspapers. This is both a cost-effective and eco-friendly alternative to plastic grow pots. 

Other alternatives

Other alternatives are plastic trays, eggs and supermarket packaging for new seedlings. Plastic trays are the most popular choice because they are both suitable for seeding and growing seedlings.

Plastic containers holding fruit– which have pre-drilled holes at both the top and the bottom– are a cost-effective choice for growing seedlings, which serve both ventilation and water drainage. Small food plastic bowls, kitchen containers, washing-up bowls, laundry baskets, and old colanders or strainers can function as plant pots or growing containers.

Covering seedlings with plastic bottles or plastic bags can help you grow plants and flowers that would not normally grow in your location. The plastic will help function as a greenhouse, which both keeps the seedlings warm and increases their chance of survival.

Using old and unusable tyres as container gardening is yet another example of innovative gardening.

Topping off your creative ideas with inexpensive creative ideas is to water your plants using plastic bottles. You can use old plastic bottles (from soft drinks or water) that feature tiny holes on the sides and top to release a slow, but constant stream of water to your plants. Your plants will continue to receive water slowly, even when you are unable to tend to your garden. To water plants in containers using this method, ensure that the containers have holes at the bottom for water drainage. By doing so, excess water can drain out of the holes and the plant will not rot. Furthermore, ensure that the holes are not plugged. 

By avoiding the purchase of extra plastic pots, you can save money and avoid pollution. Recycling old materials rather than discarding them is a way to keep them away from landfills and make your garden more interesting to look at. You can use kitchen containers, small food plastic bowls, washing-up bowls, laundry baskets, and old strainer or colander as plant pots or containers. You can also use these pots or containers to grow fruit and vegetables. Your vegetables and plants will stand out more if your boxes, bowls, and containers are brightly coloured. Environmentally friendly and pretty!

Recycling kitchen & garden waste

Composting is an age-old method of adding nutrients back to your garden. Different varieties of compost are readily available at garden centres, but composting at home is becoming an attractive option. There are a variety of composting methods available, from a simple open-topped container to tumbling containers or even vermicomposting. The point of composting is to use what you have (lawn trimmings, organic waste or animal waste) and convert it into something useable to grow new food and add nutrients back into the soil. 

Innovating for lack of space

Square Foot Gardening

Even the tiniest of terraces or sunny windowsills can still be utilized to produce fruit, vegetables, and herbs. 

If you are growing outdoors though, you can  grow plants in a limited available space by using square foot gardening. This is a method of growing plants in a set grid, typically a square foot, in order to grow lots of produce.

You create three-by-three or four-by-four square foot gardens. These squares are filled with premium soil and manure must be added periodically to nourish the plants in accordance with their needs and requirements. You must make sure that optimal spacing is available between the plants to ensure their success.

Gardening innovations: in conclusion 

All of this to say, there are many different methods and options for including sustainability and innovation in your gardening space. By utilizing these methods, you can ensure that your garden will be best suited to you and your needs, all while taking advantage of the tools and methods you already have. 

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