Replaced the lights

on Mon, 03/14/2016

Well, I found that I really liked the other light I purchased better, so I packed up all the lights that I had purchased and returned them. When I bought them they weren't what I had wanted in the first place, and the way I had them hooked up made it difficult for me to water plants, move them around, etc. They'd said if they didn't work out I could bring them back within 30 days and that's exactly what I did. Now I have the new lights hooked up and I hope these are going to work better for me. It's much easier dealing with one light, two cords, and two chains on each shelf than two lights, two cords, and four chains. Ended up saving about $100 this way.

Bought a new light...

on Sun, 03/13/2016

So Friday I went out to buy a new set of lights for the third shelf since my eggplant had popped up and I didn't want it to get too "leggy". Went to my usual store and they only had one light (I needed two). They said they might have more in later in the day, but didn't know. Didn't even offer to put one aside or order one. I bought what they had and then ran around town trying to find another. No such luck.

So I went to Home Depot to see what they had. Couldn't find any 4' T5 lights that plug in, but did find some T8 ones. They were just under $18. Then a set of two daylight bulbs for the fixture was like $9. So for less than $27 I got a light that actually works better than the T5 ones I bought previously. They're brighter and are longer (even though all of them are supposed to be 4'). So I think I am going to see about taking these other ones back and replacing them. I haven't been entirely happy with them, but they were what I could find. For the $40+ I spent on each one, I would expect more.

How-to: So where do I start?

on Fri, 03/11/2016

IMG_0361.pngA lot of people want to grow their own vegetables, fruit, and herbs, but don't know where to start. It's taken me several years, but I've gotten pretty good at it. I continue to improve and learn from others and will be even better once I'm in a house where I can plant in the ground and have more room to work.

For the purpose of my blog, I'm talking about fruits and veggies in the culinary sense, not biologically. So cucumbers, squash, greens, peppers, etc = veggies. Tomatoes and strawberries = fruit.

I grow plenty of vegetables and some herbs, but very little fruit. That's because most fruits seem to grow on bushes, vines, or trees, and I can't have any of those in my container garden. But once I get into a house and have land, I am looking forward to growing a lot more fruit. When it comes to herbs, I just grow the things I use often, like basil, rosemary, cilantro, and chives. I also grow some mint to help attract pollinators and such.

Planted more seeds

on Thu, 03/10/2016

Well, with the exception of cucumbers I think I'm just about done planting seeds for this season. I've done a few batches of peppers, tomatoes, squash, and eggplant, which should be enough to meet my needs and have plenty left over to sell. Every year I am too early with my cucumbers, which means my first batch dies because it is too cold outside when I move them outdoors. So this year I am purposefully waiting a few extra weeks before I start the seeds. Since I don't have any room inside for them, I can't be tempted to start them yet. I have a bunch more peas, beans, greens, and herbs to move outside, and once I do that I'll have room for the cucumbers. 

Here's some photos of my tomatoes and squash:

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Did some outdoor gardening

on Sun, 03/06/2016

I've been wanting to do some outdoor gardening, but with my back injury it makes it difficult. Today I finally was able to make it out there and do some gardening. I put some of my window boxes back out into the yard, cleared out dead leaves, and planted a whole bunch of plants.

I now have peas, beans, lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, spinach, kale, and bok choi growing outside in my garden.

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Welcome! About this site...

Zucchini seedlingsWelcome to my blog on container gardening. I live in an apartment and as such don't have the option to plant anything in the ground. As such, I gave dozens and dozens of containers surrounding my patio filled with herbs, vegetables, fruits, and flowers.

I started out with just a few planters of strawberries around my garden. Then I added a few hanging baskets of flowers for our daughter. Each year I've expanded and expanded my garden. I've been buying bigger and bigger containers and adding new plants. I've found some things that have worked well for me - like the Asian finger eggplant that produced probably 100 eggplants - and things that haven't - my rapini never grew and it's just too cold for melons to do well.

I hope to share what I've learned thus far, tips, and more through this blog. I also hope to hear from you about what has worked for you.

Be sure to check out the photo galleries! Lots of photos there showing what I'm growing, how the plants are doing and more!