Container Gardening - Gardening Forums

wanting to create a balcony garden next year

For inspiration and advice about gardening in pots and planters, gardening indoors and outdoors, from balconies to terraces, and everything in between.

wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby lumene » Jul 01, 2012 1:31 am

HI!

Well I am brand new here and wanting to return to gardening (or as close to it as I can get living in a fourth floor apartment in Victoria BC).

I have a nice sunny balcony with a little shade from a single tree. I am leaning toward herbs and veggies mainly because I have developed food sensitivities and as a college student saving money and eating healthy don't always go hand in hand.
I have a vermicompost system that I am hoping to make use of to help my future plants flourish . I am just needing some assistance in getting started, which is why I am preparing a year early. :)

I have a rough list of what I''d like to start with, but it keeps changing, or I'd post it.

Thanks for reading.
User avatar
lumene
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 30, 2012 10:07 pm

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby davefrombc » Jul 01, 2012 3:28 am

There are several candidates for your balcony garden that garden that are hardy enough to survive through most of a Victoria winter. Many of the greens like Swiss Chard, leaf lettuce, spinach , New Zealand spinach are good candidates. You can also rig up a mini greenhouse to grow some herbs that would be a little more tender too. Worm castings do make a good soil amendment too, so you should be able to supplement your meals with a few select home grown greens over winter.
BC Fraser Valley zone 7/8
User avatar
davefrombc
 
Posts: 1269
Joined: Dec 05, 2008 5:38 pm
Location: Fraser Valley, BC

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby Dumbo » Jul 25, 2012 7:26 pm

lumene wrote:I have a rough list of what I''d like to start with, but it keeps changing, or I'd post it.

Why not post it anyhow to see the direction you are going in with the veggies you like?

How much space do you have? How much space are you willing to give up?

Also, buying pots for a bunch of veggies isn't very cheap, unless you hit a deal in the fall someplace or check out the suppliers where you can normally get some nice big pots for a dollar. You might want to also try to google "DIY vertical gardening" as well.
Example:
http://greenupgrader.com/8460/diy-verti ... organizer/

But yeah, share what you had in mind. Some people here are pretty good with the idea's that may build upon your own. Crowd source it ;)

EDIT:
Better late than never :p
The internet is a very, very, serious entity created solely for commercial gains.
Canadian Gardening made me a hardcore separatist
User avatar
Dumbo
 
Posts: 2070
Joined: Feb 06, 2012 11:20 pm
Location: Zone 5

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby Heidi S » Jul 28, 2012 2:15 am

Hi Lumene, I'm late responding too, but here is my input.

Victoria is the perfect place to start your balcony gardening, even as early as February if the weather is moderate. with mostly sun you will do well growing heat loving plants such as tomatoes, cukes, scarlet runner beans and so on. If you do have some shady spots, consider growing lettuce and peas in these areas as they don't like heat.

For containers, something like recycled 5 gallon plastic buckets can be your best friend (cheap and easy!) You can often find these from restaurants, or paint companies. The main issue is drilling holes for water drainage and having some system for catching the water so it doesn't damage your balcony floor or run down to the lower floors and make everyone mad at you. Managing your watering needs will be one of your biggest challenges - especially when you can overflow and annoy others.

All plants in containers need feeding regularly, and the easiest way is to use water soluble formulas that are added with your watering system weekly.

You can make trellises out of branches pruned from trees, bamboo poles, string or netting. To grow pole beans, peas, and some tomatoes or cukes you usually need some type of trellising to support the growth vertically. Landlords sometimes have strong opinions on attaching things to their buildings, so check first!

Have fun and go with the flow - gardening is fun and flexible.
Heidi S,
Prince George, BC
Zone 3!

Master Gardener in Training....
User avatar
Heidi S
 
Posts: 803
Joined: Jun 22, 2010 3:45 pm

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby Jersm » Jul 30, 2012 9:39 pm

I decided to start growing veggies this year i planted many in the ground but i also did container planting.

I recycled a crap load of 2l pepsi bottles and any other large containers i can craft into a self watering pot with a wicking system.

Using a wicking system with a water resevoire means you will only need to water the plant when ever it gets low. so you can leave them to grow for a week even without having to water.the rain also raises the water again as long as you add a max amount by putting holes in the resevoire.

The plants in self watering wicking system pots are doing quite better then ground planted veggies.

I have a bunch of letus growing in 2L pepsi bottles converted to wicking. my sugar snap peas are growing in large containers 3in one growing around tomato cages tied togeter like a small tower. the sugar snaps are growing like mad weedsshooting new stocks everywhere.
User avatar
Jersm
 
Posts: 164
Joined: Jul 26, 2012 12:55 pm

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby lumene » Aug 02, 2012 12:50 am

Hi All,
I'm a bit tired so I will try and make this coherent... :P
Thanks for the great replies! I got a little busy with my animals and my summer to-do list.

I was thinking along the lines of tomatoes, spinach, general herbs such as oregano and thyme, cilantro. Peas, beans... Things I eat consistently (I'm hopeful for raspberries, but still working on that part, I hear they should say away from tomatoes).

How much space am I willing to give up? All of it! I have a large balcony thanks to some recent renovations and I plan to put it to use for the garden and possibly an outdoor ferret enclosure for my furkids to play in during the evening. Right now its just wasted space...

I too am a fan of the wicking system, its pretty much my only option to not have neighbours yelling at me (not that they use their balcony, but I might have new neighbours by then).

Right now I'm negotiating with the rental company/landlords. Each building they own has different rules (which makes no sense). My friends in another building have an amazing balcony garden, yet I'm having trouble getting approval...

This is probably unfinished in most ways, my apologies. I will do better in the future.
User avatar
lumene
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 30, 2012 10:07 pm

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby Eeyore » Aug 25, 2012 11:01 am

No need to apologize at all. You have great plans and I look forward to seeing what happens and if you get the go ahead. We don't have a lot of balcony gardeners but it sure would be interesting to see what you can do. :P
Lyn
AB, Zone 3A
----------------------------------
“Those who say it can't be done are usually interrupted by others doing it.” ` James Arthur Baldwin"
User avatar
Eeyore
 
Posts: 11189
Joined: Nov 14, 2006 10:47 pm
Location: AB, Zone 3A

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby lumene » Aug 25, 2012 2:19 pm

Well, my last post is more coherent than I thought (I was pretty tired when I wrote it).

Still waiting on permission. :S
User avatar
lumene
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 30, 2012 10:07 pm

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby shoop » Oct 25, 2012 11:02 am

I'm in a very similar situation to you, Just moved into a new flat in town with my best mate and we're really thinking of sprucing the place up because we're thinking of staying there for a few years. We have a little garden outside, and I'm already being generous with the word little. I'd like to grow some tomatoes and some herbs, like basil and oregano, but I'm not really sure how to go about it. I bought these planters from Garden Larch and I'm kind of stuck with what to do with them. Got them with the recommendation of my dear mother, I think she already has quite a clear idea of what she wants my flat to look like... But yes, any help would be appreciated!
User avatar
shoop
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Oct 25, 2012 10:23 am

Re: wanting to create a balcony garden next year

Postby davefrombc » Oct 25, 2012 1:24 pm

There are a few things to consider in your choices. Does your garden spot get lots of sun? Tomatoes and most herbs love the sun. What zone are you in ? If you are in one of the cold/short season zones you'll need at least a mini greenhouse to extend the season long enough to get ripe tomatoes; and you'll need to buy bedding plants , or start your seeds indoors under lights .
If you have a sunny balcony or deck, you could grow your tomatoes and herbs in large pots and bring them indoors on colder fall nights and set them out during the warmer days to extend the season too. Basil , oregano, chives, rosemary can all be grown in pots on a window sill too.
BC Fraser Valley zone 7/8
User avatar
davefrombc
 
Posts: 1269
Joined: Dec 05, 2008 5:38 pm
Location: Fraser Valley, BC


Return to Container Gardening

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests

Follow Style At Home Online

Facebook Activity

Contests

Latest Contests

more contests