Last year on whim I planted the chillies and within weeks I had a full plant and my cooking was 'spiced up' for months. The plant went dormant over winter but as Spring sprung this September I saw new green shoots and thought to myself, "I'm really a farmer now!"
Bolstered by the success (and return) of the chillies I decided to step it up this year and planted tomatoes.
Once again I've been pleasantly surprised with how easy it has been to grow these plants from seed - have a look at the progression of my tomato plants over the past couple months:
|Freshly planted seed sticks
|4 weeks after planting
|I transferred the seedlings at 4 weeks to larger containers.
We picked up these white buckets from the Manly Coop
(upcyled pots!) and I cut drainage holes into the bases.
|The transfer is complete! I also picked up basil and mint
(already started) from the garden centre, so I have two
tomato plants, a pot of mint, basil, and a combo pot of
basil and chillies. Yum!
|At 7 weeks - those wooden stakes were claimed
from the neighbourhood cleanup (yes, I've been
rummaging through rubbish again, I love
creative re-use!). The basil, mint and chillies are
After only 7 weeks the plants are nearly a foot tall! The plants are incredibly fragrant and the scent takes me back to childhood summers when we'd receive freshly picked tomatoes from family friends. I'll keep you posted on how the tomatoes taste later this summer, but based on the progress so far I'm feeling optimistic.
I was surprised at how much growing I can accommodate with a small amount of space. As an apartment dweller it's easy to think that I can't have a garden, but even in a small patch of sun these plants can thrive. Around my apartment block (we're a small-but-friendly block of four units) there are pots of herbs, tomatoes, strawberries and a lemon tree - we even have a rosemary bush growing in the front garden. I'm so happy to have neighbours who also partake in the joys of home gardening.
I don't think I'll give up my order with Lettuce Deliver just yet, but it's great to think I'll be able to supplement my produce purchases with home grown goodies. My perceptions have definitely changed regarding growing my own food and I'm already planning what I have room for next Spring. Maybe some rocket? Or carrots?
Have you succeeded in growing fruits, veggies and herbs in a small space? I'd love to hear what you've done!