Oh, How My Garden Grows!

The garden has really taken off – I’m so pleased with how everything is turning out. We’ve had minimal attacks by birds and that stupid squirrel that’s always hanging around, but so far most things have survived and are thriving.

The most exciting developement of all is we have a few red strawberries!

Some of the sweet peppers and tomatoes have flowers on them already. No flowers yet on the hot peppers, but we’re watching closely for them.

Everything is growing so well – looking lush and tasty every day.

The hops has already grown to the top of it’s trellis – time to add an extention to it already. The cabbages are doing well and the tomatoes are robust.

The bay tree continues to grow like a weed – we’ll have to pot it up again before the summer is out!

And this is the neighbor cat Maybe. (His name was Maybelline, but then they found he was a boy…) He likes to come by for a visit (i.e. a quick pet and a cat treat) every once and awhile and enjoy the garden scene.

Deck Veggies – Part Two

I think I finally have things mostly situated. It’s not my Platonic ideal set up, but if I had that, I’d probably be bored out of my mind. Striving for perfection is a good thing, but overall I really like how things have turned out. It’s a nice space to hang out in.

The tomatoes and cabbages are a little more comfortable now. Instead of a highly overcrowded four to a pot, they are now only two to a pot. Yes, I realize that this is still not book-perfect garden row spacing, but I think it’ll work. They’re both smaller container-friendly varieties. I’ve still got another two of these large pots, so I could’ve space them out even further, but let me tell you how difficult it can be to schlep large quantities of soil around the city without a car. Despite my husband’s willingness to walk a mile to pick up a couple of bags again if that’s what it came down to, it just wasn’t feasible. We couldn’t get enough soil that way if we wanted to. Having soil delivered was either exorbitantly expensive or required purchasing massive quantities (twenty bag minimum!?). So we ended up buying three bags of potting soil from the dollar store (of all places) two blocks from our apartment. Ironic note about that? It’s actually better quality stuff than we got at the garden center. Go figure.

We’ve got peppers all over the place now. In the worst case of overcrowding I’ve ever committed, I had four to these smaller pots originally. Now it’s two by two. You can also see the new spiffy black metal plant stands I picked up at the dollar store for $3.00 each as well. The rosemary and the bay tree – which I’m going to have to get into a larger pot before the end of the summer because it grows like a weed – form a nice little barrier between our space and our -let’s just call them “interesting” – neighbor’s deck space next door. I would also like to point out the the scuzzy bath towel “air-drying” on the security spikes is not ours…

At any rate, we still need to hang out summer lanterns and I want to get just a little more potting soil so I can use one of the extra pots to grow some fingerling potatoes. Maybe I can convince husband to walk with me to the dollar store tomorrow and get another bag or two if the weather holds. So, the deck is done, but not done. ūüôā

Deck Veggies – Part One

This weekend, we got all of the veggies into soil. Not all in the permanent homes since we ran out of potting soil (we still need enough to fill four seven-gallon pots), but we’ve got them all in some kind of dirt¬†at least.

That’s our brand new rosemary and the window box. Oregano is in the center, flanked by thyme, cucumbers and chard. I know typically that cucumbers and chard need a lot more space to grow, but I’m going to give it a try here – after working at the rooftop garden¬†last summer I’m amazed by what can grow in very little soil. So we’ll see what happens. The biggest challenge will be keeping it watered and fertilized.

An alternate shot of the deck railing, with the hanging baskets visible. Sweet peppers in one, hot peppers in the other. They’re super crowded with four plants each – when we get more soil, only one will be in each pot, with the remaining three getting transferred to larger quarters.

The spot below our deck railing on the patio houses the tomatoes on the left and cabbages on the right. I’ve got four plants per¬†container right now due to the soil shortage, but I’ve got another four of these pots, so they’ll end up being two to a container. All six pots will be lined up here, in the sunniest spot.¬†Still slightly tighter space than is ideal, but I’ve successfully grown produce in much¬†smaller pots totally indoors in an east-facing window¬†for many years, so to me this is like the Garden of Eden.¬†I think I can make it work.

This is our one planter of non-edibles Рa false spiria in between two creeping junipers. It provides a nice flash of color in front of our bedroom window. And you can see the spare pots just waiting eagerly for soil just off to the side.

Stay tuned for Deck Veggies¬†– Part Two when we get our next batch of potting soil and get everything into¬†its proper space.¬†¬†We still need to hang our¬†white summer lanterns (in between the hanging planters)¬†and maybe get a few pots of flowers for our etagere (which lives to the left of the white planter above and is currently mostly empty) and then the¬†deck will be “complete” for this season.