Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Balcony Veggie Patch

In every house I've lived in I've always wanted to grow something in the ground. Even in rentals knowing that spending money on a garden was foolish, I've gone ahead and planted out. In our last house J and I spent a long weekend hauling railway sleepers and planting capsicums and lettuce before being told on the Tuesday that the owners needed their house back and we had 6 weeks to be out. Every time that happens I promise myself that I will shovel and bag my nicely composted soil and I'll take it with me to the new house. It never happens. After moving boxes and doing the final clean who has the energy to worry about dirt?

At this house we are blessed with a large sunny backyard. Perfect for vegetable beds. Maybe the disappointment of not seeing the fruits of my labour at the last house still stings, or maybe I'm just tired.. either way I just could not find it in my heart to get excited about planting in the garden this spring. 

I said I wasn't going to plant anything. Then I remembered the feeling of popping outside at dusk to grab some leaves for a salad, and the taste of a home grown tomato still warm from the sun. Just a few lettuces and one tomato plant then, or maybe just the two. 

Given my state of mind about planting in the ground, this garden needed to be close by and above all, portable. Thus, our balcony veggie patch was born.

Here we have one 2.3m length of zinc rain guttering and some concrete blocks that we found on the property.

J drilled some drainage holes into the bottom of it and we used the concrete blocks to hold it up above the ground.

Next we filled it up with some good quality potting mix and worm casings.

Jemima and I planted some Diggers heirloom spring onions and lettuce seedlings.

This is what we have so far. Two tomato plants (one Legend, and one Thai Pink Egg), two cucumber seedlings that I hope to grow along the wire at the front of the deck, one courgette plant, and some herbs. And the guttering garden of course, which we hope to expand with another length of zinc soon.

It's not my dream garden by a long shot, but we will have something home grown and fresh this summer, and that's always good thing. I'll update you in the next few weeks so you can see how this works out. I hope it does!

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