Well I’m back home now after my various adventures in Montreal and Toronto and need to get back to living my regular life.
I was so happy to see that while I was away, things have started to grow on my balcony. Over the years I have experimented with trying to grow all sorts of things and you would be surprised what you can actually grow in unlikely places!
This is oregano ( on the left) and mint ( on the right) that I planted three years ago now. It grows up and I hack at it all summer, using it however I fancy, then around November it appears to die right off, but then in spring it grows right back! And now the mint seems to be taking over most of the box!!
I started my by balcony garden by combing the garage sales and picking up different kinds of vessels. Window boxes, buckets, big flower pots, and then things to put them on, like children chairs and tables and little shelves so that things are at different heights. It is a fun pursuit to furnish your garden.
But my favorite things to grow in are my recycling bins that I brought with me from Toronto. My “blue box” and my “grey box”. I got them fresh and clean one earth day when they were giving them out in the park and never used them for actual recycling so they are perfectly food safe and they already have wholes punched in the bottom which are great for drainage.
Then I took my knapsack and went down to the beach and filled it with as many small stones as I could carry……actually I made several trips to get enough stones to fill all the bottoms of my vessels. You need the stones both for drainage and for the roots to have some space to breath because straight dirt can become too compacted.
Then away you go, you can grow all sorts of things.
Last summer I was so excited because I got some little broccoli plants and was thrilled at the idea of growing my own. The plants were growing like gang busters and it was so fun watching the little heads of broccoli emerge from the centre. I watched them and watched them but then had to go away for a week and hoped that they would be ready to harvest upon my return.
Unfortunately they peaked while I was away and by the time I returned they had flowered up like a hydrangea flower!! I was so sad. And who knew that broccoli flowered like that??
So keep an eye on your garden or things can get out of hand!
One thing I had a great success with was cucumber plants. I just got four little plants at the store and planted one in each corner of the container. Two made it and two didn’t. But the two that did, grew like crazy and we enjoyed many cucumbers well into the fall.
I always try to grow a tomato plant or two but it never really gets warm enough for them, so I am lucky if I get a red tomato or two by October.
But now’s the time to start planning.