Vegetable and herb container

Get the best from veg in pots

Growing veg, herbs and fruit in containers is a great way to save space. We show you how to get the best from these container-grown crops.

Lots of vegetables can be grown in containers, including potatoes, tomatoes, chillies, salads and more.

Advertisement

To get the best from them and to ensure you always have something to pick, it’s worth taking the time think about the plants you grow and how you grow them.

Discover which crops to sow in pots in April.

Follow our advice for getting the best from veg in pots.

Lots of vegetables can be grown in containers, including potatoes, tomatoes, chillies, salads and more. 

Combine crops that like the same growing conditions

A selection of veg growing in containers
A selection of veg growing in containers

Combine crops that like the same growing conditions. Plant basil among your tomatoes as it will love the warmth and can help prevent whitefly on them. Summer savory is said to discourage aphids from broad beans.


Grow companion plants

Tomatoes, basil, oregano and parsley grown together
Tomatoes, basil, oregano and parsley grown together

Grow companion plants together in the same pot. Basil can prevent whitefly on tomatoes. Summer savory is said to discourage blackfly from broad beans. Find out more about companion planting.


Use deep pots

Courgettes and nasturtiums in a container
Courgettes and nasturtiums in a container

Use deep pots to give tall plants stability. But avoid containers with tapered sides if you need to use supports, as canes can’t be pushed far enough into the compost.


Use trailing plants

Tomatoes, basil and lettuce together in a container
Tomatoes, basil and lettuce together in a container

Use trailing plants such as tumbling tomatoes and nasturtiums, which will grow down the sides of your pots, making the most of your space.


Sow speedy crops

Radishes growing in a container
Radishes growing in a container

Sow fast-growing crops such as radish and pea shoots in containers with slow-growing vegetables like tomatoes and kale.


Grow larger crops

Beans growing round a tepee of branches
Beans growing round a tepee of branches

Don’t assume container crops have to be dwarf. Use plant supports to gain height – bamboo canes or hazel poles are ideal tied together to form a tepee for climbing French or runner beans, borlotti beans and nasturtiums.


Plant edible flowers

A red nasturtium flower beside a courgette plant
A red nasturtium flower beside a courgette plant
Advertisement

Plant edible flowers like nasturtiums and violas alongside your more traditional vegetables to decorate salads, while also encouraging beneficial insects.


Don’t forget hanging baskets

As well as growing crops in pots and containers, you can also grow some in hanging baskets. Some of our favourites include tomato hanging baskets and strawberry hanging baskets

Red watering can