How does one get equally good results from containers as from ground and beds?
Must use beds, as ground is filled with 40 yr old bamboo roots, which are covered by a georgeous lawn.(can't use planter beds) In past four years (#1-2015) mild summer-my second in Dallas Fort Worth, got small yield. I seeded too few plants; had no problem with any bugs. Yr#2: hotter summer-more bugs, no harvest at all. What bugs and squirrels didn't eat, the sun destroyed. Same for years 3 and 4 --bugs and squirrels grew worse. Also, I find it very hard to keep soil healthy. All additives washed out by next rain or watering ---sometimes too much water. How to balance all this?
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
For outside, this can be quite difficult. You need plenty of dolomitic lime, wettable sulfur, and organic slow release feeds of your choice, since they will all be constantly washed out. You also need meters to test for soil pH, and EC (electrical conductivity) which will tell you how much nutrients are still in the soil.
You containers need to be VERY large and have plenty of drainage. Your size will depend on the plant in question, but generally a 15 gallon will grow anything that you need, foodwise. Paint them white for protection from heat.
This is a 'learn as you go' thing, and will require years of practice in container to nail it down. This method is worth the trouble if you have no other options, though.