Environmental Wellness: Starting a Garden

This isn’t so much a how to post or anything like that as much as it is…so I want to start a small little balcony garden…but I’m not really sure how or what I should do…do any of my readers have gardens? Can you offer any feedback? Tips? Advice? Right now I’m looking for planters at garage sales. I have scouted some local areas for buying plants (I’m probably going to pick them up at the local farmer’s market) but beyond that…I really haven’t thought through the process of what all I am going to need or how to plant things…

My mom had a huge garden while I was growing up so you would think I would have picked up something from her…but nope. I got nothing.

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One thought on “Environmental Wellness: Starting a Garden

  1. Hey there…I just came across your post when I was looking for garden blogs. I’m a keen UK gardener, now living out in the countryside with some land – but I’ve had tiny town gardens, including just windowboxes, before. I would maybe start with thinking about what you’d like in your garden – flowers? veg? herbs? fruit? A bit of everything? Does your balcony get plenty of sun? Is it windy? Those things will help narrow down the list of what you can grow – it’s much easier to grow plants that like being where they are! Before you drag lots of huge planters and soil up there – can the balcony take the weight?

    I don’t know how big your balcony is, but to get started, how about just getting 2 or 3 biggish pots. Perhaps have herbs in one, and a few flowers in another (perhaps with a climber like a clematis in the middle) . To plant – make sure the pots have at least one hole in the bottom (for water to drain out). Put a few pebbles / stones / bits of broken pot in the bottom – this lets the water seep through, and stops the soil falling out. Get some bags of any ordinary compost (peat free is more environmentally-friendly), and fill each pot up – to about a couple of inches below the top. Then – pop in your plants! How about buying a few things that are in flower now, and a few things that will flower later on. If you’d like herbs, almost all will grow well in pots. If you’re interested in ‘wellness’, how about herbs that make nice teas, such as mint, apple mint, or lemon verbena? Another idea would be to grow a ‘salad pot’ – with a strong tomato plant in the middle (they grow tall!), and some basil and lettuce plants around the edge. If you like fresh salad, get two some smaller pots and trays, and fill with a little compost – in one, pop in some bought salad plants that you’ll soon be able to harvest. In the other, sprinkle some mixed salad seeds, cover with a tiny bit of soil, and water when it seems dry – in a few weeks, they should be growing well. Once salad plants are growing well you can trim off the leaves a few times (leaving a few leaves each time), and the plant will grow back several times – it’s called ‘cut and come again.’

    Sorry about the long post – growing food and flowers is one of my favourite things, and I love to encourage others to get growing. I’m lucky, I learnt to garden from my Mum – but for some reason, I never picked up cooking tips from her (and she’s a great cook!), so – you can’t win them all! Anyway, hope this helps. If you’d like more ideas, feel free to drop me a message on my blog – alderandash.wordpress.com Happy growing!

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