Thursday, June 13, 2013

From black to green thumbs

So this is yet another project that we started. Going green, Quite literally :). My mom has always been a plant lover, and would love to decorate our house with different house plants. After I moved out, my erstwhile room has now been converted into her green house. Taking inspiration from her, we decided to make use of our balcony, where we have installed our solar panel to do some urban gardening.

Thanks to many internet links, especially GeekGardener , we were all geared up to do some container gardening. It started off as urban plant mass murder in the beginning, with us killing more plants that we planted. Especially coriander.

This is how far the little guy grows most times.
Then, with our first batch of compost, some plants really took off.  And some plants sprouted out of it. The first one was (as you guessed) tomato. It is such a an easy plant to grow, and it fruits happily. Eating veggies that you harvest from your garden is such an awesome experience! Here are some pictures of what we're growing. How many can you identify? 

After our first tomato harvest, we've had:
1. Two more harvests of tomato
2. One harvest of potatoes
3. Continuous supply of mint (it was once attacked by pigeons, but braved it)
4. Celery, grown from the root, thanks to these guys :)

Growing more plants would mean, more containers. We wanted to be self sufficient  So here are some of the containers we're using:
1. Used paint cans from painting our house

2. The  granite sink that was earlier in our kitchen would make an excellent herb garden. It is now getting ready for round two. 

3. Packaging cardboard boxes and high grade polythene bags that we get from Malls etc. Can you spot the pizza delivery box being used as a drain base for the container?

4. We also re-purposed this door frame that we removed while renovating our house as support for climbers.
Door frame supporting our pepper plant and what we think is cucumber (grew out of compost)
It has been an awesome learning experience. And a lot of R&D to manage pests.

We haven't really had a good success ratio yet, because the list of plants we killed is longer: chillies, strawberry, coriander, fennel, basil, pumpkin.... the list goes on. 

We'd like to document more details in upcoming posts. Hopefully with more success stories. We also are in the process of setting up a DIY irrigation system to reuse our kitchen water. It has been one of our long overdue projects. 

Till then we hope our current batch of coriander will survive!

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