Container Gardening: Growing Salad Bowls

Container gardening, particularly growing vegetables in containers, is new to me. Oh, I knew it could be done. I’d just never done it. A couple of weeks ago I moved from a house into an apartment. With the move went any hope I’d had of creating a garden that could keep my family in vegetables all summer long.

So now I’m researching container gardening. That’s when I found this video from our friends at Cooking Up A Story featuring a creative, easy, and inspiring idea: growing salad bowls. It’s container gardening at it’s best.

Aren’t they cute? If you only harvest the outer leaves, you can continuously harvest this beautiful salad bowl to create months of salads.

In the video below Joan Baune of Rainyway Farm in Portland, OR demonstrates how you can grow and harvest your own salad greens in what she calls salad bowls. She has an eye for design, too. So, the bowls are not only useful, but beautiful. Imagine doing it with herbs, tomatoes, or other fun salad crops!

From the Cooking Up A Story article:

While their plant starts were a big hit, they realized that city people didn’t have the larger parcels of land that were common in the suburbs. This “aha!” moment led Joan to the realization that potted vegetables would be a great value-added addition to their product mix, and she came up with her Rainyway Farm Salad Bowls.

She first fills the 20″ plastic pots with a rich potting mix and then gently adds 15 to 20 lettuce and chard plants that she starts from seed. Joan’s eye for composition is evident in the red lettuces and colorful chard that she adds, saying that the different textures and colors make it look prettier on a patio.

After planting, the pots are then moved into the greenhouse to mature and fill in before going to the market. Joan said that many people buy them for gifts as well as for their own use, trimming off the outside leaves as they mature and using them in green salads. Frequent requests have led Joan to start making herb bowls as well, with a variety of perennial herbs (video coming soon).

Like I said, it’s container gardening at it’s best.

Watch the video:


    • Kelly says

      I live in Michigan too. I started container gardening on my balcony with self watering containers. They are containers with a resevoire on the bottom for water. That way the containers won’t dry out during the day. I’ve had really good luck with them. I start my seeds indoors around Easter and then transplant them into the containers after the last frost. I get a lot of peas and lettuce and tomatoes and other things I plant. You can grow a lot in a little space.

  1. says

    What a great idea! I live in a tiny flat and would love to grow some of my own food but I just don’t have the space. That looks like something I could do though.
    .-= Lovelyn´s last blog post …The Sea =-.

  2. says

    LOVE this idea! I’m planning on doing square foot gardening, 3 areas being 4×4′ each, with one dedicated to lettuces…but after watching that video, I’m totally scratching that idea! I’m going to do one (maybe two) of the salad bowls!

    Looks super easy, and pretty.
    .-= Rebecca´s last blog post …Molly Monkey #1 =-.

  3. says

    Great timing – I live in an apartment and have wanted to grow my own vegetables for some time, but didn’t really know where to begin. I think they look great too! I’m really looking forward to it now…Thanks for another great post :)

  4. says

    I have three flower boxes on top of my dogs kennel in the house by a window with pea shoots and baby turnips and kale in them right now…outside, i have patio containers with chives and oregano already coming up–gonna plant the basil, tomato and other must haves this weekend–i have a big garden too, but i like to go outside and grab the baby greens from a pot! great article kirsten! I also have a farm in a one quart jar and I wrote about it today on my blog! I am a farmer in a one quart jar!
    .-= Alex´s last blog post …Its all for the birds! =-.

  5. says

    Thanks for the great post! Matthew and I only have a condo, and this is our first year to garden. We have the small spaces gardening book as well as the container gardening book. I don’t remember either of them with ideas looking so great as that “salad” bowl. I can’t wait to try it!

  6. Shayna says

    I too live in an apartment, and I’ve done almost exactly this. I got the idea from the book Bountiful Container. It’s like a handbook for anything you might want to grow in a container, including edible flowers! They also talk about using organic methods of fertilizing and pest maintenance. I recommend this for anyone who wants to grow more than a pot of herbs on their windowsill.

  7. says

    This is wonderful! I had never thought of “growing salad bowls” and yes this both a beautiful and healthy means of container gardening. What a great idea for gifts or a way to make a little extra money by taking the product to a local farmers or flea market. You’ve also given me a neat project to start with my granddaughters, thanks!
    Wow, now I’m thinking about herb bowls and strawberry bowls…the possibilities are endless.
    Thanks for the terrific post my mind is reeling with more creative ideas!
    .-= Christine´s last blog post …Advantages of Vegetable Gardening in Containers =-.

  8. Linda says

    I just found your website. Been reading around.
    Just wanted to let you know that the link to Rainyway Farm doesn’t go there any more.
    Glad I found your website!

  9. Mitzi says

    This is so inspiring. I also live in a small space, but would love to have a garden where I can enjoy the view, as well as the wonderful salad greens and other salad fixings that are growing in this salad bowl garden. This is a truly fantastic idea.
    I will try this and let you know how well this succeeded.



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