Starting a Garden without Ground

March 18, 2010 Comments Off on Starting a Garden without Ground

One of the most important things you can do to eat sustainably is eat locally, and what’s more local than stuff that comes from you backyard. I grew up gardening with my mom and  we pretty much always grew something to eat in our garden. But alas I am a big now and have been trying to garden on my own and  failed at growing my own food for the last I don’t know, 6 years. This year the timing and motivation were  right(fingers crossed), but of course there was  a catch. I have no yard this year, not only do  I rent but I live in a condo. Luckily I  moved up from the east side to a deluxe apartment in the sky… or maybe that wasn’t me. Anyway I moved to the downtown area of our town(as tiny as it is) and live  in an apartment that is basically on the roof, and with lots of sunny  flat space come opportunity. Thus I introduce to you what I have to work with.

The desert that is my roof:

The roof is a good roof, but really hot thanks to black rubber plastic and has no water source, and while plants like sun, many don’t love sweltering heat and they all love water. So maybe my particular roof isn’t the best place for a garden, but I am dedicated so here we go. It is still the early season here in Virginia, with it still getting pretty cool at night. I decided to start lettuce, broccoli, strawberries, spinach, and potatoes(which haven’t been planted yet.) Because of the heat retaining moisture is key,there are lots of thinks you can do to help with this. Since it is still coolish and I have some time to figure out more methods,I opted to use plastic pots for most of my plants to limit them drying out. Although if you are looking for a cheap alternative you can easily use a harvest basket and put plastic inside(make sure to poke holes in the bottom.) You want a pot that can breath and keep moisture in, a tough job for a pot and ceramic pots can really suck the moisture out your plants when they are receiving a lot of sun.  So after getting some dirty fingers and playing with arrangement I have the beginnings of my garden. I hope to add lots more things, but as I have a problem with moderation(and no water source), I am actively trying to restrain myself, saving my sanity and my poor abused pocket book.  I still haven’t figured out how to water these other carrying water out to them from inside, I’m hoping to add a rain barrel into the mix soon(any other watering advice would be appreciated.)  I have a reprieve as it is still not hot enough during the day to dry out, any idea to prevent impeding drout  are welcomed. Most of you will have it much easier if you choose to plant some vegetables in pots, as you can put them wherever you want,  like close to your front porch or near a water source, just make sure there is lots of light!

These are strawberries, which work great in a hanging basket I’m told so that’s where they reside.

I bought this harvest backt for 3 bucks and some plastic from lowes for 2 bucks for a cheapo pot.

So you see that to start gardening without ground you really just need some pots, soil, and a watering source doesn’t hurt either.


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