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Garden Recycling - Plastic Containers 2

Posted on May 24, 2016 at 1:40 PM Comments comments (0)



For those who were wondering if my plastic container garden was ever completed, wonder no more. Over this past long weekend, the weather warmed up and I found the time to repot into my recycled plastic containers. It was surprising to see how quickly the plants resettled in. Once the plants are sturdy enough, I will repot them up permanently in my larger metal garden containers - old kettles and pails. With more warmer weather on the way, it won't be long.




This year I've planted sage, tomato, flat-leaf parsley, oregano, thyme, chives, some garlic, rosemary, and mint from seed. All of these were started off in empty eggshells 'pots', then each one placed back into egg cartons. If my egg cartons had been those paper ones, I would have simpled planted the seeds into the carton compartments but mine are clear plastic and I like to reuse these over and over again. I stored the carton 'incubators' under the kitchen sink cupboard - a nice dark and cosy place for seedlings to sprout. Once the seedlings had grew a few inches, I transplanted the little fellows into plastic milk containers (the ones I used for the pizza gardens last year).


Note that before transplanting, I gently crush each eggshell and then place each in the new container. Even though the eggshells will soften in the new pots, it's still a good idea to crush them as it allows the seedling roots to quickly reach out and settle in new soil. Because it was too cold to put these outside, I placed the plastic containers in front of a sunny window near the heating ducts. When it was warm enough outdoors, I moved the containers onto to their bamboo perch.



This is such a simple way for anyone to garden. The kids that live in my apartment building are already working on this year's balcony gardens (I gave each one my surplus seedling plants) and were, again this year, eager to see the results. Note you don't have to use plastic containers - waxed milk containers work just as well. So do tin cans. If you are using tin cans, remember to put something under each can to prevent rust showing up on your patio or balcony. An old saucer or plastic lids work well.


Also you don't have to start off your seedlings in eggshells - egg cartons (as I mentioned above), newspapers or cardboard toilet rolls work just as well. Use what you have and get the kids involved. As with the eggshells, you should make tears in the toilet roll pots and open up the bottom as cardboard takes a long time to disintegrate and this can stunt the seedling roots. Newspaper on the other hand falls apart quickly.


Enjoy your gardening!


Garden Recycling - Plastic Containers 1

Posted on May 11, 2016 at 7:55 AM Comments comments (0)

I'm getting so impatient to start my little balcony garden. I've managed to start chives, garlic, and thyme plants this year and have kept these nice and warm under my kitchen sink. Now it's time to get them outside. However, here in Ottawa it's still a little too cool to put out my plants. My plastic milk containers, all in a row, are ready to be filled. 



I slipped a bamboo rod throw the handles of each container to hold them in place and then added two over-the-door hooks to secure the rod to my balcony railing. I love this time of gardening as it saves me lots of room on my long, but very narrow, balcony. And it's portable, too, so I can move it when the plants need more sunshine. Once the plants are too big for the containers, I will transplant them into bigger garden pots. 

Earth Day Project - Seed Bombs

Posted on April 17, 2016 at 5:15 PM Comments comments (0)

In honour of Earth Day (coming up this Friday, April 22nd), I’ll be hosting a series of Spring Recycling workshops here in Ottawa. As well, I will be posting eco-friendly projects that will hopefully inspire you to view your recycling bin in a whole new way, and keep Earth Day alive all year round.



Why not start off with a way to plant without the hassle of having to till the soil (okay, I know that sounds kitschy)? I'm talking seed bombs here - just make and toss! Rodale Organics have a super easy 'recipe' for making your own using unscented cat litter (which is essentially clay - who knew!). The site also provides handy tips and instructions for how and where to aim your little bombshells. A great project for your inner kid and your kids - it's like making mudpies with a purpose!


I know these little guys work because back in the day when I was gainfully employed, I used to roll up seeds from my breakfast and lunch veg and fruit in dirt and toss these under the trees where I worked. They were surprisingly quick to sprout - unfortunately the landscape guys treated them like weeds and were constanting pulling them out!


Ah well, these days I will be making my own seed bombs and handing them out on Mother's Day, all neatly tucked into recycled egg cartons. I just have to go out and get some supplies including the cat litter.


Ciao!

Back Green Garden Update

Posted on July 17, 2014 at 11:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Well, here they are - photos of our lovely back green garden in bloom.



The lettuce (Lola Rosa) patch is already producing enough for most residents ...



I never knew you could grow your own celery ...



Herbs are my favourites as you can pick, and pick, and pick ....




The rosemary and mint in these clay containers give the garden a distinctly Mediterranean flair, don't you think?



Nasturtiums keep the French beans company.




The little guy loves to play under the trees behind the garden where he makes mud pies but he also loves to water the plants in the garden. This garden has been a godsend for me as I find it hard somedays to keep up with his nibs. So much energy in such a little package. Now we spend mornings in the garden enjoying the sunshine - I get to catch up on my reading and the little guy plays happily by himself or with any of the other kiddies that show up.