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Last month, I was nervous that I killed my lettuces when I harvested them. Luckily for me, the lettuces were fine and grew again. So now, here I am one month later and facing a similar situation. I’ve gotten about 4-5 harvests from this container of lettuce and it’s starting to show. I’m not sure if this lettuce better days are behind it or if it still has some fight left. I went to Trina from Silver Heights Farm and asked her what she thought since she is who I bought them from. She said that they still be good for...

I was at my Grandmother’s one day and talking to one of her friends about gardening. We got talking about compost, so I mentioned the indoor composting set up in my kitchen. She said that she’d blend up the food scraps and put them in her composting bin when she kept one. That’s a great idea and not sure why I never thought of it. Especially since my composting mistake. By putting the food scraps in a blender or food processor, it helps to break the it down. Then when it’s put in the compost bin, it’s closer...

I finally got around to starting my upside down herb garden after killing it last month. Since the first go around was such a success, I decided to take it slowly this time and just planted some parsley. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8XDoYSn8os Here’s a step by step as to how I planted the parsley upside down in my herb garden. I stress “gently” because I was anything but in the first go round. Gently separate out one of the parsley plants. Gently place into the container. Feed through and gently pull through the...

After two months, the cherry tomato container on my fire escape is starting to produce fruit and was starting to get a bit wild. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHJdUn8t5cg I needed to keep it in check and set up some kind of support for them. The following materials were used to do so – tree branches, string and tire wire. Three tree branches were attached to the fire escape (so that people can still grab the railing in case of emergency) using the tire wire and one was staked in the middle to support the entire plant. Then I tied...

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been showering my lettuce plants with love because they’ve been producing the most. Nearly forgot that I had peppers and tomatoes planted on my fire escape as well. Luckily for me, they didn’t hold it against me and are starting to produce. There is a small sweet Italian pepper that has formed and is doing it’s thing (whatever it’s called) with lots of flowering going on. My cherry tomato plant is also blooming (I’ll use different phrases until I find out what the proper...

When I last left you, I was wondering whether or not I properly harvested my lettuce. It was a week since I had harvested them and they were looking…dead. This is my first time checking in since returning and am happy to say that the lettuces are ok and fully growing. It just took a bit longer after harvesting for them to grow again. There is still some browning towards the bottom, but the growth is there. I appreciate the comments that were left about lettuce not liking the heat and how to deal with that.I’ll definitely take...

Let me start this post by saying that I’ll be taking off for a week and a half. Going on a camping trip to the Grand Canyon and Utah. Try not to miss me too much. Now on to the post… Last week, I harvested my lettuce for the first time and was pretty happy. This week, I might be able to substitute the word “kill” for “harvest”. I think I clipped them too close to the roots and killed them. Dead. Done. No more life. On a good note, I didn’t kill the tomato plant. It actually started to flower...

Last month, I read the book Plenty. There was a passage in it about “food traceability” and how our food travels on the average 1,500 to 2,000 miles from farm to plate. That has stuck with me, well because that number is insane. Besides the distance that it traveled, what about what else went into getting that food to me. How was it treated? Who are the people that worked to get it to me? How were they treated? Even though I didn’t start from seed, I can tell you that I got the planter from Trina at Silver Heights Farm,...

After being away for six days, I was shocked when I returned to see the growth of the lettuces in my containers. It was definitely time for my first harvest. Most of the leaves were at least 6 inches and didn’t want them to get much larger. This brings me one step closer to my goal of getting one salad. Didn’t turn this into a salad because I had already eaten dinner. Made this post abbreviated because still playing catch up from being away. I definitely wanted to get something posted though as it’s pretty damned exciting...

Even though I’m out of town, I still wanted to post something for the day. So I decided to take some glamour photos of me and my gardens before I left. Enjoy! ...

It’s been a rainy week here in Seattle, I mean New York, so I haven’t been paying much mind to the vegetables out on my fire escape. When I finally checked on them, I was happy to see that the lettuces, peppers and tomatoes looked pretty healthy. Then I looked above them and noticed the sad, sad sight of the herb garden I started to grow in the upside down vegetable planters. They looked the opposite of healthy – dead. Here’s what I think contributed to my massacre of the herbs: My surgeon like touch. Much like...

It’s one full week since I’ve planted my vegetable gardens on my fire escape and in Brooklyn. Here’s an update on how things are progressing. Before I do that, I wanted to let you know that I decided not to garden at my parents in Staten Island and to move those containers to Brooklyn. Logistically, it makes more sense that way. My Fire Escape Vegetable Garden The tomato plant started to bloom a bit and was picked. It was picked so that the plant can focus on growing as opposed to blooming at this point. The pepper plant...

I set up my vegetable garden on my fire escape this afternoon with 3 buckets and 5 upside down herb planters. One bucket has Mottistone Crisphead lettuce, Parris Island Romaine lettuce and Anna Aasa tomato. Another has Mottistone lettuce, Parris Island Romaine lettuce and Buttercrunch. The third bucket has Jimmy Nardello’s sweet pepper and Chile Releno. The...

It’s been two days since I attempted to get rid of the smell of the indoor compost pile. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bsxvgPNor-w There is no more leakage out of the bottom and the smell gone. The takeaway from this is not to take it easy on the food scraps. Now I can take that and use it when building and maintaining my home composting bins at my parents and grandmothers. They’d be less willing to deal with the smell than my roommate. ...

On Tuesday when I turned the compost all was well and there was no smell. Two days later not so much. It stank and it stank bad. The batteries on my video camera died, so there is no video, but that has nothing to do with the smell. I had a feeling that the last pile of composting greens were too much. Just got too over zealous. Instead of scrapping the bin all together, I am attempting to remedy the situation. The bin was leaking through the holes in the bottom and the smell was awful. My plan was to remove a lot of what was in the...

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. httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TwyFFpE-yYg 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...

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...

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. ...

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...