SPRING

i’ve had a bit of time out of my blogging – we moved apartments, and it’s taken awhile to set up the new one to a state of interest, and i’ve been to busy/braindead/unmotivated to blog for a bit, due to spinning or knitting or star trek (or all three).

a former colleague (who just retired) was kind enough to donate to me a Tiny Greenhouse – three levels, plastic, zip up. perfect for the balcony!  i’ve got a lot of seeds in there at the moment – i’m doing one tray each weekend and keeping track of the dates of planting and germination for each of them (i know, how organised!) to see what works, and what doesn’t. i am not confident about either the chillis or the tomatoes germinating well just yet – it’s too early, i fear, even though my microclimate is pretty warm – but i will give it another two weeks before i write them off.

today, i noticed my chilli, that i’d thought was dead, had new growth on it.  i cannot beging to describe how exciting this was for me – i really did think i’d killed it, i’d stopped watering it, and i’d resigned myself to its loss. and now?! alive again! admittedly it got almost no fruit last year, and the ones it did get, though adorable, were really, really mild. but still! this year, things could be different?
here’s a brief survey, with photos (obviously!) of where The Balcony is at.  

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CHILLI! ALIVE!

There is the chilli! it’s alive! one of my Twitter People suggested i call it Lazarus .

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borage! not porridge.

one of our amazing volunteers at work gave me some borage.  i have no idea how to correctly say borage, and i feel a bit embarrassed about that. but the flowers are lovely, and it’s creepy how much it does taste like cucumber.

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Kale! it is big now.

remember my tiny kale seedings? I SURE DO! this is the one remaining kale plant, all grown up. one was sacrificed to the gods, because it was too small and being destroyed by constant slug attacks (by the mystery slug i never located).  two had to go due to the polystyrene box they lived in being bad for transport – the bunnies love them. and this one remains! strong, powerful, majestic.  i should eat it, but i’m really emotionally attached to it.

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sage – it’s not marjoram.

i got confused by this photo earlier, because i took one of the sage and the marjoram. this is not marjoram. it’s sage, a gift from another colleague, and it’s growing wonderfully.

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basil: the next generation.

and finally, my basil.  it’s just germinated.  i’ve started a stack of seeds off, but so far, only the basil has risen – but tomatoes can take up to two weeks, so i do need to be a bit more patient!  my poor handling of the greenhouse has lead to two basil related casualties. i think i need to keep the greenhouse open during the day. i used jiffy pots – the water seems to escape them quite fast, so i don’t know if they are much good, to be honest. i am watering them with my Spray Bottle morning and night.  we’ll see.

so! balcony ahoy! it’s far, far brighter than either one was at the old property – so despite not having as much space, i am confident i will get far more productivity out of it.  we’re planning a vertical garden on the back wall, and five hanging baskets over the edge, and i also really want to get a metal shelf/stand thing to put potplants on to maximise space.

i had planned a really fancy tomato growing system, but realised that i just can’t justify $200 for it. rather, i’ll just try and be extra careful with  making sure i fertilize regularly, keep the water at the right level, and watch carefully for signs of over/under heating.  I also have gone with mostly determinate varieties this year – i’m trying to get a hold of some Tiny Tim seeds, but have three different small determinate seeds on their way, and one already in the jiffy’s.

Spring is exciting.

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About elizabeth

various things.
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