Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Urban Oasis

With the purchases from different nurseries this weekend, I created a mini urban oasis for us on the balcony. I was mostly concerned with weight, so the only really nice pot I have for all the plants is my old cobalt blue one that traveled all the way here from Illinois. The rest are all plastic pots. I also picked some rather shallow boxes for planting, and while not the best choice for some of the plants, I hope they work out. I know that most of the boxes are over crowded for some of the plants as well, but I am kind of a try it out and see what happens type of gardener. I am also some what concerned about the amount of sunlight that the plants will get, but the original box of herbs looks much better in the less sunny balcony than the full sun window of the last apartment. Well time to end the rambling and roll out the pictures.

We have wanted to have a lemon tree for some time, and now we have the space for one. This is a dwarf Meyer Lemon tree. I am really excited as it already appears to have several lemons started already. There are also a few flowers on it, and I think that is why Dan picked it over others.

We also got me a tomato plant.

This is the one I am most concerned about with the sun issue. Tomatoes need plenty of light to get going, and I hope this one gets enough. I have never heard of this particular variety, jetstar, but we liked the name as well as the description of it being a less acidic kind of tomato. I used rooting hormone in the watering yesterday for the plants, and the tomato seemed to show instantaneous results. It seemed to get taller yesterday by at least an inch and sprouted some roots rather high on the stem. Hopefully this is not a bad thing for this plant.

I still have the second try herb box from the last apartment. It has lasted through several week long absences from me, the main caretaker, and several weeks alone by itself. It always seems to keep on ticking. I did have to replant a new thyme plant, as it was destroyed by what I think are aphids that have recently reared their ugly heads again this week. They also went after the parsley, and after much debate, I got another parsley plant thinking the old one was dead. Much to my surprise, it was doing okay after I cleared all the dead junk out from the three weeks of neglect the window box took. I also am trying out dill again, but I think the box is just too shallow for this usually hard to kill plant. We will see if try number four is successful. I intend on getting a spray bottle to whip up some aphid killing soap spray this afternoon. Scorched Earth policy is back in effect.

This is the biggest experiment box for me. I like to call it the trellis after my somewhat lame attempt at a bamboo trellis appears in this one. (Yes, it needs much twine for it to be finished.... that will happen after the run to Target today.) I accidentally bought too many bean plants, so instead of throwing some out, I planted them all. Strong will survive mentality for me on this one, plus I simply cannot through out those perfectly good plants. We are trying out green lake beans on the one side of this box. I am going to try to get them to climb up the trellis, and then just prune them down if they get bigger than that. I have never grown this type of bean, so I hope it works. On the other side of the box are a zucchini plant and a cucumber plant. I hope to trellis train those as well. This is a total first for me, seeing as Dad and Uncle Glen always got the plants growing, I only weeded and harvested from their gardens.

I have given up on my scrubby basil plants that I stared from seed myself and am going with new seedlings. I hope that I do something better with these. They look much greener than any I have stared on my own. they are also much bushier then the ones I usually start with. I wonder sometimes if I do not pinch them back enough when they are young. I should really read about this seeing as basil is supposed to be an easy plant, and I always kill them.

I ran out of pots for this plant. It is a pepper plant, and I hope to get enough green peppers for a few nights of kabobs and stuffed pepper action over the summer. I also was one pot shy for planting my radish plants. Those I could only find as seed, so hopefully I can get those up and running today after my shopping trip. Perhaps I can find some green onion seeds while I am there too.

This baby just keeps on ticking. If I can keep from flooding it and turning it all brown, I will be in luck.

This is my most favorite add to the balcony right now. I love all the food producing plants much more than flowers usually, but it is nice to have one girly plant out there. I love the smell of jasmine, and I am so happy to have one of my own. I am hoping to train it into some cool shape, but I am not sure what I want to do yet. Maybe a braid or something? Anyway, it is nice to have such a sweet smell right outside the studio window. I can already see myself spending time out there hand sewing things in the afternoon. Ahhhh.... urban oasis. I want to run out there right now, and I think I just may.

1 comment:

sara said...

Very nice. We had jasmine out on our balcony last year. It was a nice light scent whenever we were sitting out there.