"You can grow just about any vegetable in a container," writes Kerry Michaels in "Vegetable Container Gardening for Beginners".

Here are some tips that Michaels mentioned in that article, and few more that we added, to help you grow healthy vegetables all year long, in containers.

  1. It's best not to use metal containers because they can become very hot and cook your plant's roots.

  2. Watering. Many vegetable plants, such as tomatoes, need lots of water. However, you don't want to drown your plants. The goal is to keep the soil evenly moist but not soaking wet. Since a pot has restricted space, it is easy to under or over-water your plants.

  3. To figure out whether your plants need water, stick your finger down into the soil about an inch. If the soil feels dry, add water; if you're not sure, wait and check later in the day. At the height of the dry season, you'll probably need to water at least once or sometimes twice a day. This is often the most high-maintenance and critical aspect of vegetable container gardening.

  4. Use quality potting soil. High-quality potting soil is important for vegetables. Don't use any old soil from your garden because it may compact in the containers and won't drain water properly.

  5. Feeding your plants. Plants need nutrition to thrive, and their food is fertilizer or well-decomposed compost or manure.

  6. Creating optimal drainage. Drainage is key to keep plants from drowning. Your container should let excess water out of the bottom, so your plants won't sit in overly soggy soil and succumb to root rot.

  7. If your container sits on a hard surface, the hole might plug up. Elevating your container with pot feet or a pot cart will help your plants drain with ease.

  8. Select the perfect container. Choosing a container can be daunting. You can use almost anything for a garden planter as long as it's big enough, has good drainage, and is made of food-safe material.

  9. Choose seeds or seedlings. You can start your veggies from seed or buy seedlings. There are some significant advantages and disadvantages to each. Planting your own seeds is much less expensive than buying seedlings. Plus, you can organically grow hard-to-find varieties.

  10. When choosing vegetables to plant in containers, look for bush or small varieties, often referred to as dwarf or compact.