Home Gardening: Response to Climate Change

by blackspanielgallery

Home gardening is subject to climate issues, heat and changing precipitation patterns. However, there are viable alternatives.

Home gardens have been popular for years. It is the pleasure of growing your own food, at least in part, that makes the practice popular. In addition, it allows one to know what was placed on the plant, if anything, to fertilize and to repel insects.

One consequence of climate change is conditions are not static. In fact, conditions in one place might vary greatly over a year. As temperatures rise it would, at first thought, seem to expand the growing season. But it can get too hot for vegetables. In this area eggplants can form brown spots in the extreme heat of summer. And, as the temperature rises tomatoes and beans fail to set. These are not unique, but they are given as examples of what happens as summer gets too hot for plants to produce.

Another problem is stronger storms, with hail occurring more frequently.

Controlling the Conditions

Control of conditions for home gardens can mean growing in a greenhouse, albeit temperature control might still be an issue.  And greenhouses fare poorly in hail.  Another method is to bring some of your garden indoors. 


Whatever method you choose you will need to be aware of the plants needs, including lighting, water, and nutrients.  And potted plants require attention to root size, which means having appropriately sized pots, and the drainage problems the pots present.  You might need to pay much more attention to your garden than if it were to be a conventional, outdoor plot.


Greenhouses are used to help keep plants warm in colder months.  They trap heat.  This can extend the season by allowing seeds to be planted early, and seedlings to be raised to healthy sizes before transplanting.  Unfortunately, a greenhouse will not abate hot summers, unless the glass panels can be covered with opaque material.

Greenhouses for Home Use

Greenhouses have a multitude of functions, and come in a variety of types. A greenhouse can enhance a garden, but must be matched to the needs of the gardener.

Simple Indoor Gardens

Some indoor gardens, especially herb gardens, have been popular for many home cooks.  Reaching for a small amount of any herb is not harmful to the plant, since the plant can regenerate quickly.  Yet the fresh herbs cannot be topped as delicious dishes are prepared.


Some smaller vegetables can also be grown indoors.

Indoor Herb Garden

An indoor herb garden allows you to control what is added to your herbs in the growing process, and assures a freshness unmatched. And, there are other advantages as well.

Dwarf Fruit Trees

While dwarf fruit trees are less likely to provide the bountiful harvest that an outdoor large fruit tree would, a wide variety of fruit can be grown indoors in containers. 


Aeroponic systems allow vegetables to be grown indoors, without even using soil.  Of course, the plants still need nutrients, so the nutrients must be applied. 


These systems come with lighting that can be regulated for time of day and duration. 


The advantage here is the system, if properly chosen, allows for stacking.  Do not allow water from one level to reach the electrical system of a lower level.  This allows more plants to be grown where space is limited.



Hydroponic systems allow nutrients to be absorbed from water.  Water has weight.  As a result, these are not as stackable as aeroponic systems.  But one can add the nutrients to the water, or one can have a time release system to help pace the nutrients.  The advantage is if you are not as conscious as you should be a slight variation in care is more forgiving, and watering is also less frequent.


The Future

As climate becomes more erratic, and conditions become less predictable one season to the next, alternative gardening can still reward you with home grown vegetables.  Of course, corn, okra, and other large plants might not be adaptable to indoor gardening, so your variety of vegetables might be limited.  Another problem is with pollination.  But pest control is easy. 

Finding Space

One can find space in a spare room, in a basement, or even an attic if it has temperature control. In fact, any small corner that is not being used otherwise can hold a growing system.

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The introduction uses one of our own images, and is our Zazzle product.

Updated: 01/02/2020, blackspanielgallery
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blackspanielgallery on 01/03/2020

Since outdoor gardens are watered from rainfall, and the water collected is the same, except for whatever falls on the roof, it is not likely to be damaging. However, as pollution increases and acid rain gets worse we might have to rethink not only use of collected water, but how it impacts our farms.

I tried to not write this as a survivalist who fears everything, but as a minimal reaction to what can be an unreliable growing season, and mitigation of rising prices that might result.

DerdriuMarriner on 01/03/2020

blackspanielgallery, Thank you for the practicalities and products.
Indoor gardening at its best makes me think of the in-house, old-fashioned conservatory, the indoor garden kept by the doctor and his wife in the Camilla Belle version of the film When a Stranger Calls and the indoor lemon tree grown by the heroine in Ismail Kadare's The Concert.
Would pollution compromise such resource-saving measures as linking outdoor rain barrel water with indoor garden irrigation?

blackspanielgallery on 01/03/2020

The spots are often several inches in diameter. I have had the problem on purple and green eggplants. They get about half the size before picking, then they develop the spots. I have had the problem in various years, so it is not a passing disease. The common issue is the heat, usually in the 90s. If you plant late, early April, with transplants from a nursery, the heat comes before any eggplants can be harvested.

frankbeswick on 01/03/2020

Brown spots on egg plants due to heat! I had not heard of that condition, but it's no surprise. Here egg plants only grow under glass, so I'm not likely to experience this problem.

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