It’s been a about a week since the last layer of food scraps were added to my < a href="/category/composting/indoor/">indoor compost bin, so I figured it was time to give it a turn. To turn it I use a broomstick to poke around and loosen everything up, then I take a small shovel to mix it. It’s been taking me about 10 minutes each time I turn it. It’s pretty full at this point. The last batch that I put on was a lot on top of what was already there, but no smell and nothing seems to be going wrong. It just takes a while...

After days of back and forth, I decided to go with copper pipe instead of the vinyl tubing in the self watering containers. Wasn’t very clear on the benefits of one over the other because read lots of pros and cons on each of them. For using copper pipe, came across a few articles that spoke about leaching into water. Came across the same articles for vinyl tubing. Since I was going with the vinyl tiles for the insert, I felt better about choosing the copper pipe. In shopping around for the pipe, the ranges varied greatly from $25...

Here’s a video tour of the layout of the planned vegetable garden in my Grandmother’s Brooklyn backyard. ...

Instead of buying one of them fancy upside hanging planters, I decided to reuse 2 liter soda bottles. Finding them was actually much easier and cleaner than expected. ...

by jamieleto After securing the garden space in Staten Island and sleeping on it the past few days, I came up with a plan to make this more affordable and environmentally friendly. I did as much research as I could into what would be the most affordable, environmentally sound and healthy way to do this project. The first thing that I looked into was which plastics are food safe and environmentally safe? The numbers on the bottom of the containers surely mean something. Sure enough they do. Then came across another site, which spoke about...

I took my first crack at making the insert for the self watering container today. The hardest part was cutting a square into circles that would fit snuggly into the bucket. Yes, I just said snuggly. Tools that I needed: Razor blade Scissor Pen Thumbtack Rope or string Something to measure water Materials: 5-gallon bucket Coin cup to use as my wicking basket 1 12″x12″ vinyl tile Drill with 1/4″ bit Steps in making the insert: Put the cup in the container and fill with water. Stop when the water reached the top of the...

So in a matter of two days I’ve greatly expanded this project from a small garden on my fire escape in Manhattan to a large garden in Brooklyn and my parents in Staten Island. That’s a lot for someone who has zero experience in this, but that’s how I do. When I get involved in something I go full steam ahead. Now that I have all of these spots, the costs drastically increased. I need to let this sink in, figure out what I am going to grow and how. Also going to take another read through the book and catalog to see...

Took the day off from work today to spend the day with my gram and to negotiate the land space with her. Before I headed out to her, I measured out the space of my fire escape garden. Not too bad about 36″x”12″. That should be enough for about three buckets without getting in the way. Just need to figure out how many soda bottle planters we can fit. Then I hopped on the L train and headed into Canarsie. During the train ride, I continued to read the Self Watering Container book. After some b’sn and catching up,...

Posted on Apr 23 2009 - 8:17pm by Mike Lieberman
#4

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As you can see, by this time I am expert at getting buckets. Once I get my Flip Video camera I’ll have to record and educate you on my ways. For now just be in awe of my splendor. I’ve also been doing more reading into building the self watering containers and what can be used. As of now, I am going to go with the bucket in bucket or the plastic tote in plastic tote approach. Those seem to be the ones that best suit my needs. ...

It’s about a week since the compost pile was first turned. When I first opened up the can the lid was sweating. That is supposedly a good thing because the compost is supposed to heat up, so it can do it’s thing. I took the broomstick and shovel to it again to get the air circulating and to mix up the browns and greens. It seems to progressing nicely, so I threw a big heaping pile of fresh food scraps onto the pile and layered the browns on that. My guess is that I should have compost to use pretty soon. ...

First off, I scored my first bucket last night. On the way back from the movies (I checked out Anvil and highly recommend to any 80s metalheads out there). I saw one laying out next to a dumpster, so I snagged it. Soaked it over night in some baking soda and vinegar. Like new. My Gram sure is smart. Besides being a ridiculously gorgeous day outside today, it was a productive one as well. Picked up the Incredible Vegetables from Self Watering Containers book from the library. I went to the park, laid out in the grass and started to plow...

I am taking this project beyond my small fire escape garden and back to my Brooklyn roots in Canarsie. Yup, I’ll be growing a vegetable garden in Brooklyn. What? A few weeks ago my grandmother offered up her backyard to grow what I wanted. The offer was turned down because I didn’t think that I’d have the time to tend to it, and I wouldn’t expect my 90-year old grandmother to take care of it. My gram still lives in Canarsie, which is about an hour commute from me. Now that I’ve come across self watering...

The following instructions on how to make a compost bin can be scaled up or down based on the space that you have. Since I was dealing with the small space of my kitchen, I used a smaller 10 gallon garbage can. If you have more space, you can use a bigger can. The same concepts apply. Making your own compost is a great way to cut into your out of pocket costs when starting a vegetable garden. The tools and materials to build an indoor compost bin: Tools Drill with 1/4″ bit Materials 10 gallon metal garbage can Black and white...

by your idea After some research, I got more info on the self watering containers. The Homegrown Evolution had a great resource on Self Irrigating Planters posted on April 5. One site that I checked out, Instructables, had a few different variations. One using 2 liter soda bottles and plastic totes. I like it cheap and green. Fits the criteria. Before I got too far ahead of myself, I had to talk to my roommate to see if he’d let me put these containers out on the fire escape since it’s out of his window. Luckily, he and I...

For the past few days I’ve been lamenting in my stupidity of building a window garden in a spot that gets no sun. Smart move on my part. Good job. But things done changed. I was trolling around on this here internet for what I can possibly grow or do. I came across the idea of self watering planters. Most importantly this video: The basic concept of self watering containers is that the water is on the bottom of the container and the soil above. There is a separator between the two and a small basket that allows the plant to get...

by Tomás Fano Great. Got the compost going and the shelves built. Walked down to the Farmers Market at Union Square today to talk to some of the farmers about what I grow on my newly built window garden. To sum it up real quick – nothing. Yup, that’s right nothing can be grown out there. It gets about two-three hours of indirect sunlight a day on a good day, which doesn’t allow for most vegetables. So the window garden is out of the question. Great planning on my part. Back to square one to figure out what if anything...

The compost bin is set up in my kitchen. Wanted to keep the momentum going and build the shelves for the garden. First thing I had to do was to measure the area of the window garden. Wasn’t sure exactly what dimensions were required so took a bunch of different ones, hoping that all or a combo of them would be good enough. You can see my masterpiece above. Gathered my list of what I needed and headed to the local hardware store. Tools for Building the Window Garden Saw High gloss paint Paint roller Pen or marker to markup the...

When I first moved into my apartment, my roommate had a small window garden. It was a shelf that bridged the areas between the window in the living room and my room. It was a small area that he use to grow plants. On a rainy winter night, the wood had enough and collapsed. It happened while I was home and the crash scared the shit out of me. Personally, I was never into plants, so it wasn’t much of a loss to me. I knew that my roommate enjoyed them though. Shortly afterwards, he and I talked about building a new window garden, but...