Written by - Kaitlynn from MIgardener
The move towards more efficient gardening practices has been around as long as gardening itself. In the 70's the grow bag was introduced. Grow pots were a new way to plant, and a better tool for transplanting than classic terra-cotta pots. Grow bags were originally imagined for home use, but changes in design have adapted grow bags for better planting and are now a favorite for farmers.
Benefits of grow bags:
The pros completely outweigh the cons in the world of grow bags. All grow bags are made with breathable material which allows for air pruning to occur for your plant. When the roots are exposed to oxygen, the root is effectively killed off at the end. This allows for your plant to grow another root directly from the source instead of the individual root branch over growing it's space. Each time a new root grows, the plant is strengthened and will grow in height at a more rapid pace. Developing this growing pattern early on will increase the chances of your plant having a natural root structure if you choose to transplant it into your garden.
Grow bags are also better at controlling the internal temperature and water content of your soil than traditional pots. In the cold, the fabric will keep your plant warmer, and in the hot sun your plant won't overheat. Although grow bags require more frequent watering, it's only because the porous material is less likely to hold in excess water like other material would. Your chance of facing root rot while gardening with grow bags are slim.
A design for your needs:
We use the following bags in a 3 Gallon - 5 Gallon - and 10 Gallon size.
The 3 gallon size works well for a single plant like a pepper, or a couple plants like lettuce, spinach, and beans. The 5 gallon works well for almost anything especially tomatoes. Finally, the 10 gallon is so large that you can pretty much have a complete garden in just one container. Grow things like potatoes with ease, a tomato plant with basil around it, loads of spinach or salad greens, or whatever your heart desires.
Grow bags come in even more different shapes and sizes. If you are new to gardening, get started with a handful of soil and a tiny burlap grow bag. Keep it on your windowsill all year round! Some grow bags are specially designed for growing potatoes with a side opening perfect for harvesting from the ground up. Some are perfect for strawberries with side pockets for planting in a stacked formation. While most grow bags are reusable year after year, some are biodegradable and can be planted directly into the soil. Reusable bags can be folded and stored in small spaces during the off season, without any worry of them breaking down in the cold.
Bonus: grow bags last longer than pots and plastic, and are better for the environment at the same time!
Whatever your goal is in the garden, you can find a grow bag with those goals in mind.
Will you be making the switch from plastic and pottery to grow bags? Let us know.