As I was chopping up my store-bought scallions, I noticed the little roots at the ends. I had read somewhere about growing produce from store-bought items, and decided to stick the ends of the scallions into my fabric pots filled with garden dirt.
Sure enough, a few days later I began to see growth! Now there are new shoots coming up and I will have scallions to cut soon to add to my cooking.
Some sort of animal was digging in the pot, but the onions seem to have come through it fine. I can’t wait to walk into my backyard and clip off scallions to add to my meals.
Although I have almost an acre of land, most of it is low-lying forest and wetlands. My backyard is a narrow strip, with the sun hitting part of it only 6-7 hours a day. I do my best, trying to plant crops in the space that gets the most sun. It’s a challenge when I have to rotate plantings each year. The photo below was taken last summer (2014). That is pretty much my entire backyard. I plant flowers and vegetables along the edge of a slope, which drops off to woods beyond. Only the part near my deck gets enough sun for good vegetable growth. I concentrate my plantings there.
Photo Above: See my new propagated hydrangea there in the front?
I’ve added raised fabric beds to the area, which has been a great help. Last fall I planted my garlic bulbs, and they are doing very well – better than any garlic I’ve ever attempted to grow. I hope the bulbs will end up being nice and big.
What begins as lots of space, quickly fills in when the plants grow and expand. The tomatoes grew great last year (picture below) right up until they all died of late blight! It was depressing.
It’s a constant battle with the black raspberry plants (or are they blackberries?) that threaten to overrun the yard. They grow upwards from the slope, where I think they were purposely planted to hold the earth in place. It’s one of the few berries I dislike. It figures that I have tons of them! They are eaten by the chipmunks and birds, when my cats are not around.
Raspberries grow at the side on my house, and I can find many wild strawberries in the yard. The strawberries I planted have become overrun by weeds, and I didn’t have enough space for a proper strawberry field. Occasionally I find a few nice ripe berries to munch while I survey my garden. The sunflowers are volunteers that sprout wherever they choose. The seeds self-plant from when I feed the birds in winter.
I sometimes wish I had acres of land to roam and plant, but I’m content with what I have. It takes a lot of time to garden, and especially when you do it all alone.
If you love to grow fresh veggies but have little space or time to keep up with a garden, you might want to experiment with vertical bottle gardening. The idea of this type of garden is to grow vegetables in recycled plastic bottles that hang or are propped over each other. This takes minimal expense since pots don’t have to be purchased, and takes up little space since your crops grow over the tops of each other.
The video on this page shows how a man has set up his vertical bottle garden in the window of his high-rise home. The writer of the Experiments With Mini Vertical Container Gardening page has created a stackable garden that sets on the ground. She has so far been successful in growing lettuce and Swiss chard and she promises to keep us up to date with her future bottle growing endeavors. She included lots of her own photos too.
Mini gardens are very popular with busy, working people as well as those of us who simply don’t have the space, or sunny area to make a regular garden. The vertical gardens are watered from the top with water moving downward to keep all the bottom areas moist which saves time. Weeding would be next to nothing and if your garden is inside, like the one in the video, you won’t have a bug problem either.
As for me, my gardening will be done out in the yard. I’ll be working this May to get the soil ready for planting and I also plan to build a raised bed myself using cinderblocks. More on that to come. I still have a yard full of snow!