Friday, January 7, 2011

Polystyrene Container Gardening January progress

I am happy to report that this summer the polystyrene container gardening is actually doing better then I thought so against the very hot weather. Newly prepared containers that has been filled up to 2/3 mixture of kitchen waste, free desease pruning things, grass clippings and horse poo, then filled to brim with potting mix has create a moisture retention soil. I also checked the soil that I did  like this in last autumn/winter whether that have fully composted, it did and many BIG FAT WORMS our best friend in the garden when it was not there at the first place. Now, instead of adding shopped compost into the container to replenish nutrient to the used-up soil, I take out half of the soil and put again all my secret recipes at the bottom of the container and fill back in with the same soil. The used-up soil at the bottom of container is actually newly organic compost stuff so it has new-made nutrient store in it. Mix with top (exhausted) and bottom (fresh) soil voila another reusable soil. This way I reduce my cost of using potting mix to grow plants in containers.   
Left container: Amaranth, Okra (Burgundy), Turkish Leopard Melon, Self-seeded tomato.
Right Container: Kang Kung (Water Spinach), I cannot remember whether it was Mr. Tumeric or Ms. Ginger between the kang kung plants.

I read one of this gardening book that said not too bother growing onions in pots. But I think the onions that we are growing does not look bad. It does produce bulbs. For fun let see how big the bulb can grow :).
I love to sit in front of my swinging cucumber after a long day at school. They don't need my companion actually because carrots has been a good pal to cucumber.
Left Container: Finally I had success growing bush bean ( Redland Pioneer) in pot and it is producing even in partial shade. Kai laan ( Chinese Broccoli was growing in between the bean plants but now Mei Qing Choi F1 seedlings has just popped up. The reason for the success warm weather and soil depth must be at least ~30cm.
Right container : Leek seedlings transplanted in August/September growing without needing any tender loving care. I decided to sneak in some turnips to grow between the leeks to see how well it grows and to avoid any pest munching too much on its top. I found that turnip does not grow very well in spring here so I will try again in the coming autumn. Turnip supposed to be fast growing but I can't see any root developing not only in this container but others as well. I think I am going to pull out the turnip and give leek more space to grow.

 Left container: The fast growing and rambling sweet potato grown from shoot cuttings.I hardly noticed kai laan tuck in between the sweet potato leaves. I was observing the cabbage white butterfly when it was hovering near this pot whether it noticed the kai laan to lay eggs or not. She fly close enough but did not seem to be able to differentiate the kai laan leaves with sweet potatoes. Hmmm...natural camaflouge?

Right container: Cherry tomato plants, chives, amaranth and ginger.

Left container: I am really glad that we start keeping home-saved seed bitter gourd from last warm season. We don't have good germination back then and we have to wait when it was really warm before the seed germinate and start our first harvest of bitter gourd in febuary. However with early planting this year (seeds adaptation to our environment), our bitter gourd growing in the container has start producing fruits. I myself wonder where did we get this wierd idea to make a very tall trellis in a small pot. Bitter gourd climbing higher and almost as tall as the evening sun sunfllower peeking from the other side of the backyard fence.
Right container: Cherry tomato plants, Lemon basil and Spring onions.


I would like to do the "SEED WEEK" on the 22nd~26th of January 2011 for us to share our own experiences that is related to seeds, rhizomes or cuttings that can be about collecting or growing them or how to keep them in top shape. It can be submission of an old post or a recent one and not limited to only one post only. In my gardening journey (well not that long yet however I am still novice), I found many joy in collecting the seeds from the one that I have planted to continue the cycle of life and watching them grow again like their parents. It fascinate me how a small seed can contain all the elements to produce such a beautiful live things for us.  How like human the seeds to learn to adapt the changes in environment or the hot topic climate change.  I hope we can all benefit from sharing our knowledge in this seed week. You can also submit your post earlier to me by mailing me (diana.demiyah@gmail.com) and I link it during the "SEED WEEK". I will randomly choose 5 participants for home saved-seeds give-away. I like to share my home saved-seeds to you:).

17 comments:

Jennifer@threedogsinagarden said...

For a self proclaimed novice, you are doing very well with your seedlings. It takes patience to grow plants from seeds and patience is an excellent virtue that I wish I had more of. You have inspired me to dig out some seeds, which I collected last fall, to see if I can cultivate a little patience and persistence myself this coming spring.

cikmanggis said...

seronoknya melihat kebun dalam polystyrene Diana ni.Nampak gayanya kena tanam dalam bekas seperti ini sebab semua tanaman cm yang di tanam dibatas habis dihanyutkan oleh air hujan.Sungguh sedih sekali.

Terima kasih kerana telah beri idea yang bagus ni:)rasanya cam nak juga participate "seed week':)

Eliza @ Appalachian Feet said...

I'm going to try to remember to put up a seed post in the time frame you mentioned! I'm a little unorganized right now so I hope I don't forget.

I love all of your intensive planting! Very nice job getting a lot of food out of a small amount of space.

Bangchik said...

I have tried old cooking oil containers before... but never polystyrene. They look very neat. With home made compost, you definitely are going to be very self-sufficient!... I am thinking of a suitable post for seed week... cheers, ~bangchik and kakdah

One said...

Your container gardening seems to be doing superbly well. Your sunflowers are amazingly tall. You are far more knowledgeable than me wrt home-saved seeds. I'll like to post if I can think of something intelligent to say. :)

CathJ said...

wow.... so refreshing... I miss gardening so much... but too bad.. I just can't squat or bend my body to do things now... hahahha... just have to be patient few more months.. ^_^

Happy Gardening.. :D

Green Lane Allotments said...

It's always worth trying something that the experts say isn't worth doing so good luck with your onions.

Mr. H. said...

Your plants are doing incredibly well and I love the way you are cultivating them in the containers...your onions do look good and everything is so very green. I look forward to seed week.:)

Orchid de dangau said...

Looks great...you'e Master in cultivating them in recyle containers. I think your veggies more than enough for the whole family. Congrats!

Wendy said...

Your stuff looks so amazing in those containers. If it were mine, they'd all be dried out and dead. You must take great care of your garden. The soil situation sounds really organized and nice!

milka said...

Your container gardening is always looking good. The red onion seedlings you gave me have sprouted, but they are very thin and i'm shy to show to you haha. Hope they give me bulbs!
I'm eager to learn from your 'seed week' posts, looking forward to it :)

Lrong said...

I salute you... and I marvel at how well you allot your time doing gardening, blogging, taking care of your family, and going to school...

Ellada said...

You have so many beautiful vegetable. You did a really great job. Bravo.

JGH said...

I'm so impressed with everything - especially that tall bitter gourd. Love the trellis -very pretty. Leeks are beautiful, too. I have to grow those this year. Glad you are not giving up on the onions.

p3chandan said...

Im very impressed with your container gardens,its a great idea, since nowadays planter boxes are quite expensive to buy. Would like to participate in your seed week, Im sure its very interesting.

Mrs Bok - The Bok Flock said...

Your container garden looks fantastic and so prolific! Are all your vegies from containers?? Your harvests are always so good.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Mrs. Bok~ Not all from containers. But this summer, we harvested more veggies from containers as the one grown on the veggie patch suffer from the 40+ degree Celcius as the plants there received sun all day long. However, the containers only received morning sun. Therefore, were safe from the blazing sun.