My potted garden

Discussion in 'Fruit & Vegetable Growing' started by AndrewB, Apr 7, 2018.

  1. AndrewB

    AndrewB Active Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Around September last year, I decided that I wanted to become more self sufficient. I've been a vegetarian for about 8 years & a vegan for the last 2, so that makes it fairly easy!

    I'm renting currently, so decided pots were the best option, so I wasn't wasting time & money if I move somewhere else in 12 months time.

    I stopped buying fresh fruit & veg, instead spending the money each week on pots, soil, seeds & plants. The first few months didn't yield much, just spinach, tomatoes & a few capsicums, but as I learn, it is increasing daily.

    My previous gardens have been aquaponic or hyydroponic, so switching to dirt was a little strange- a bit backwards I know.

    All organically grown, no herbicide or pesticide. I'm using comfrey/grass tea as a fertilizer & plan to add Moringa to the mix once I get a tree established- I just planted one today.

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    Passionfruit & Peach.
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    Sweet potato & watermelon.
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    Strawberries in hanging baskets, I have a few different varieties growing.
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    Basil, I grow heaps of this, any spare spots in the garden get basil added. It is so good for attracting bees & here in Perth it flowers pretty much all year round.
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    My furry little friends busy at work.
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    I put in a small pond, surrounded by basil, again for the bees, so they could have a drink. I used to see them all the time in my hydroponics systems during the flood cycle, sitting on the rocks to get at the water. The pond has also attracted frogs, I started hearing them at night a few weeks after putting it in.
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    I planted a couple of Pumpkins & some Fennel in this terrible sand, not expecting much, but they are growing quite well with some hardwood mulch & regular liquid fertilizer.

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    The corn is done, I plan to grow a lot more next season, I was a bit late this time around, but they still grew really well. I'm leaving the stalks where they are & have planted climbing peas in the pots to make use of them.
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    Recycled Spring onions. I bough one bunch of these from the supermarket when I first moved in & planted the left over roots after using them. I have let a few go to seed & spread them around throughout the garden. One of the easiest things to grow & something that I use in almost every meal.
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    My Capsicums are starting to do really well, this one is loaded with about a dozen.
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  2. Kasalia

    Kasalia http://retired2006.blogspot.com.au/ Premium Member GOLD

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    Some great ideas there, no reason why pots cannot be successful. I usually grow potatoes, lemon grass, mint in large pots, and have a Kafir lime and orange in one also.
     
  3. OskarDoLittle

    OskarDoLittle Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Othe things that love pots you could try:
    - pineapple
    - blueberries (love acidic soil, similar to citrus, but too big to pot up together) - but strawberries will do well under-planted in citrus pots
    - gingers/galangal/turmeric (makes it easy to access the tuber)
    - chili
    Actually come to think of it...most things!!
    I did once try carrots and parsnip in deep pots...that was a fail - but perhaps that was more to do with me!
     
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  4. AndrewB

    AndrewB Active Member Premium Member GOLD

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    I have a couple of blueberries, chili & ginger. Turmeric is something I want to grow, but haven't got around to yet.

    I've planted a few different types of Oregano under the trees, as it grows fast & makes a good living mulch. It drapes over the side of pots, which is a nice barrier to the hot summer sun. I'll try strawberries too, my dog loves them & sits next to me licking her lips whenever I go near them.

    I have carrots & parsnip growing, but they have been very slow growing. Radish grows great though.

    I think controlling the heat & moisture levels in pots is the biggest challenge, having a barrier to the sun directly hitting the side of the pots in summer is important, as that can quickly dry out & kill your roots.
     
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  5. letsgo

    letsgo Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Wow awesome work, well done :)
     
  6. Ash

    Ash Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

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    I'm impressed too. Well done and thanks for sharing this. I like the results you're getting. Great climate for it all.
     
  7. AndrewB

    AndrewB Active Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Thanks all.

    Another advantage to gardening in pots is being able to move your garden as the season changes, or even as plants grow & shade out others.

    I do have a fairly large backyard for a city block, but I am still limited in the amount of good growing space I have. In summer I was getting full sun all day in the area where most of the plants are, but as winter approaches & the angle of the sun changes, they were becoming more & more shaded.

    No problem though, I just spent the morning watching the garden & how the sun was moving across it. A bit of heavy lifting & dragging & everything is back to getting the maximum amount of sun per day :)

    I also observed some of my natural pest management team doing their thing.

    The Okra is starting to struggle a bit as the weather gets cooler, this one has a bad bug infestation, but over the last few days, the ladybug population has boomed to control them, I counted about a dozen of them on this one plant.

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    I have a particularly aggressive black ant in a certain part of the garden. They attack anything that isn't one of their own. If I stand there for a few minutes to water plants, they will be biting me as soon as I stop moving. They ate an entire rat that died from a neighbor poisoning it within a week, stripped it to the bone, not even fur left...

    Rather than trying to wipe them out, I have been retraining them for a few months. I drop caterpillars & grasshoppers that I take off the plants onto the ground near their nest . They make short work of them & have now started hanging out on the plants, just waiting for a meal to arrive.
     
  8. DarrenP

    DarrenP Well-Known Member Premium Member GOLD

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    Trained ants? You'll do the termite companies out of business. :)
     
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  9. AndrewB

    AndrewB Active Member Premium Member GOLD

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    A busy day in the garden. I put together a small raised bed & planted some peas, carrots, turnips, parsnips & more rainbow chard. I used weed mat to fully line the bed, so removal of the dirt when I move will be simple. It drains water well, which is why I chose it over a more heavy duty builders film, which I would have had to poke holes in.

    I used a mixture of soil, compost & perlite, as I do with most of my pots.
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    I also put together a small hydroponics system & will probably do another one soon to go right next to it. I want to compare commercial hydroponic liquid feed against a home made comfrey tea.

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    Everything moved to locations with more sun. I'm finding those green grow bags really handy for moving around. The soft handles are much nicer than the hard plastic when you're hauling around 20kgs of dirt.


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