I know my blogging has been sporadic lately, but it’s just been a combination of too much going on, or following the busy periods, plain old weariness with no enthusiasm for coming back home to sit in front of a computer again.

Put another way, I haven’t been utterly sluggish – I just haven’t been writing.  🙂

For example, last Monday (which was a national holiday, making it a blissfully long weekend) I did some gardening!  Actually, I did a mix of carpentry and gardening.  A friend of mine (Josh) had visited my place and though there’s not much to do (I am thinking of grabbing a Wii at some point so that friends who come over can have some fun) he saw the little “shelf/stand” that I had started creating the night before.

I have a balcony at my new place and from the beginning I’ve been planning on growing some flowers, herbs, and vegetables in planters out there.  One of the spots I wanted to use was the top of the A/C unit since that was really just “wasted” space.  I bought some planks of wood at Tokyu Hands to form a sort of stand over the A/C so that I could place some pots there.  The night before Josh came I had been sawing the wood to the length I needed, but I stopped short of hammering the pieces together since I didn’t want neighbors to start yelling. :p

When Josh came by the next day, he saw the wood parts and offered to help both with that and the planting since he’s had experience with both in the US.  The shelf took about 15 minutes to complete (Josh made a couple of suggestions to strengthen the design of my original plan) and I soon had a serviceable spot where I could set a number of pots.

With that done, we both started filling up the various pots with dirt.  Ultimately we set up 1 pot of lemongrass (supposedly really hard to grow so if it fails I may look into getting an actual pre-potted plant instead of trying to grow from scratch), 1 small pot of basil, 1 small pot of mint, 1 pot of spinach, 1 pot of salad/lettuce, 1 pot of jasmine, and 1 pot of moonflower.  Oh, and I’ve got an avocado seed in a glass of water as well as a couple of ylang-ylang seeds in a dirt-filled plastic baggie on my window sill. 🙂

(and that’s not all I plan on planting!)

It’s amazing, but as of last night (a mere 2 days later) the salad, spinach, and basil are already sprouting!  I’m actually a little concerned about the lettuce because I didn’t plant the seeds one by one but rather sprinkled them (fairly generously too) in the soil – and it looks like ALL the lettuce seeds are sprouting!!  If they all grow, I’ll have to consider transplanting them into a couple more pots at some point…

Another worry is that if all this lettuce grows, it’s going to be too much for me to eat!!

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  • July 24, 2009 - 07:48 | Permalink

    Yeah! Good for you 🙂 You will really enjoy eating your lettuce and when it gets cold, you could bring the pots inside and place near a sunny door/window so you should be able to grow salad year round.

    Re harvesting, some folks let each salad plant grow really big then harvest the entire plant. We’ve not done that, preferring to pluck off the larger leaves from each plant as they grow. I’ve noticed this has ensured us a steady crop of salad over the summer and the plants don’t go to seed which turns them bitter.

    Another plant that’s pretty and easy to grow is Shiso…the leaves are used to wrap our fav onigiri (spelling?) – plum. I use them to eat mouthfuls of rice with whatever sauce we’re having. Parsley is also easy and tasty.

    Suggest that you look for the screw on tops that turn Pet bottles into watering ‘cans’. I love the round ones with lots of holes. Watering with these gives plants a gentle shower rather than a waterfall. We bought ours at D2.

    If you ever see a potted cherry tree on sale, get one. They are beautiful year round and you will love the blossoms in spring and the cherries that come after a year or so.

    And don’t forget the feathered friends – a shallow bowl with seeds and one for water will thrill them and bring a smile to your face…course there is the poo to clean up every now and then 😉

    Happy gardening!

  • July 25, 2009 - 14:04 | Permalink

    I think I will go look for the watering cap you mention – that would be really handy! But the salad I’m thinking I really will need to transplant since it’s getting to be way too much in that little pot. I should have been more sparing with the seeds… And I will try to find something to use as a bird feeder! 🙂

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