The yield of a system is theoretically unlimited (or only limited by the imagination and information of the designer). (Bill Mollison, founding father of permaculture.) This idea can be an inspiration when it comes to gardening in small spaces. When you look at things a little differently, far more may be possible than you imagined.
Another permaculture idea is that we should look at the problem as the solution. In the case of small space gardening, this means thinking about the small size of the space not as an obstacle but as an advantage. When we have only a tiny area to tend, we will have more time and energy to tend the plants we are able to grow.
Consider the space you have available. Any space can be used to grow food as long as it is relatively bright and sunny, not too hot and not too cold. It might be a small garden, but it could also be a small courtyard, balcony, or even a space inside your home. (Sustainable low-energy LED grow lights, and cloches etc. can help you use even the most unpromising of spaces.)
You should take time to think about its characteristics. Spend some time observing the space before making any decisions. Think about light, think about temperature. Consider how you will be able to tend your growing areas, and use the space over time.
A Key Idea For Small Space Gardening: Vertical Gardening
Vertical gardening is key to making the most of the space. Make sure you consider the vertical space available as well as the space along the horizontal plane. As well as using pallet wood or other reclaimed materials, you can also use natural resources.
Don’t forget about climbers and vines to cover vertical surfaces. Branches can be used to make a simple trellis, or supports for climbing plants.
And don’t be afraid to grow bigger plants too. Even in the smallest space, you could consider growing a dwarf fruit tree, for example.
Use your imagination and think carefully about plants, and you can cram a lot into a small space garden. So even if you are lacking in space, there is no excuse not to get growing.