jenett: Big and Little Dipper constellations on a blue watercolor background (Default)
[personal profile] jenett
Welcome to this week's salon post.

Topic of the week
I am starting to think about container gardening for the coming summer - it's the first time in four years I've had a patio space!

I think my goal is to do some tomatoes and some herbs, but if you do anything like that, what do you do, and what do you like?

(If you are not a gardening person, as always, any other topic welcome! Start a thread.)

What I've been up to
Writing my story for [community profile] worldbuildingex (a fanfic exchange focused on worldbuilding, which has produced some really amazing works in the past.)

And next week is, for a variety of reasons, a complex ritual week for me, so this weekend is "clean the things", "prep the things", and "prep the things some more"

Useful notes
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Got a question you're trying to sort out, or a thing you'd like to discuss? Lots of thoughtful interesting people with a wide range of interests show up here! Feel free to ask about things you're thinking about or trying to solve, as well as other kinds of chat.

House rules:
This is a public post, feel free to encourage other people to drop by, just note the 'if posting anonymously, include a name people can call you in responses' rule.

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(no subject)

Date: Friday, March 15th, 2019 03:06 pm (UTC)
muccamukk: Close up of a posy in a woman's jeans pocket. (Misc: Garden)
From: [personal profile] muccamukk
I need to start tomatoes under the lights this weekend, probably also lettuce. Gardening is going to be awkward this year as I'm taking May off, which is huge transplanting season.

(no subject)

Date: Friday, March 15th, 2019 03:50 pm (UTC)
eseme: (Default)
From: [personal profile] eseme
This apartment has no space for gardening - another resident valiantly tried in pots in the parking lot last year and I don't think anything was harvest-able.

I am planning to get back into the local Boffer LARP this summer, so I have a list going of things I will need (check to see if the tend last used 6 years ago has fallen apart in storage, get a cot, figure out the best way to wheel supplies into camp, and the many, many costume items needed). Very fun, and it should be an idea mental vacation.

(no subject)

Date: Friday, March 15th, 2019 05:44 pm (UTC)
finch: (Default)
From: [personal profile] finch
Bug is interested in gardening and wants to do strawberries again this year. I like the idea of container gardening but it usually seems to fall apart on me, but we'll try again and see what happens!

(no subject)

Date: Friday, March 15th, 2019 06:01 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Fresh herbs are a really good investment of time. Basil is my favorite, but mint is a close second. I have grown cilantro, but even the slow-bolting kind just seems to flower and fall over before I even turn around. If you want some coriander seeds, I guess that's okay. Chives are also really good fresh, and if you like parsley, it is as well. I've had weird luck with oregano's not tasting anything like itself, but you won't be getting your plants from anywhere I got mine, so it could be fine. Sage is pretty and fresh sage is very tasty, but I found that a little goes a long way. You can dry it, of course.

I haven't tried any root vegetables in containers, though they are nice in an early spring garden. Peppers like having their roots confined, so if you like peppers they are a nice choice. I didn't have luck with regular sweet peppers in Minnesota -- there weren't many fruits per plant and if you wanted red ones rather than green they often failed to ripen before frost. But hot peppers were much more prolific for me. I had dried ones that were noticeably better than commercially available ones for years after I put in a couple of Thai chili plants.

Snap or snow peas are also lovely fresh. Mine have not always made it into the house.


(no subject)

Date: Monday, March 25th, 2019 10:55 am (UTC)
haptalaon: A calming cup of tea beside an open book (Default)
From: [personal profile] haptalaon
My one container carrot did not end well - the length of two pencils, and the width of one too...

(no subject)

Date: Friday, March 15th, 2019 06:20 pm (UTC)
eclips1st: (Default)
From: [personal profile] eclips1st
We've had a garden since we moved here (8 years ago?) and we always have tomatoes and cucumbers, but my favourite thing ever is garlic. I don't know if it can be grown in containers, but it's really easy to grow. The main issue is the initial investment, but that's it.

(no subject)

Date: Friday, March 15th, 2019 07:23 pm (UTC)
cjsmith: (Default)
From: [personal profile] cjsmith
I miss the hydroponics setup we used to have in an apartment building many years ago. That's the only container I've ever been successful with; we grew corn (we had to hand pollinate), cantaloupe (we trained it up the fence), tomatoes (the hornworms got most of those), and I forget what else.

Sadly, I'm awful at containers otherwise. I even killed mint in a pot. Very embarrassing. I would so love my own basil, oregano, Moroccan mint, and maybe a couple other things.

Good luck with your containers!

(no subject)

Date: Friday, March 15th, 2019 09:46 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] jazzyjj
Hopefully this will go through now. Been having a lot of trouble with the wi-fi here. Just got a new modem, and that's helped out a little bit but I think something's cramping somehow. But anyway, I don't do gardening but some of my neighbors do. I'd write more but I wan to make sure this goes through before wi-fi craps out again.

(no subject)

Date: Saturday, March 16th, 2019 01:00 am (UTC)
st_aurafina: A shiny green chilli (Food: Green Chilli)
From: [personal profile] st_aurafina
I had a container garden before I got raised beds - tomatoes do great, especially cherry tomatoes. And there are heaps of varieties of cherries - in my garden this year I had round yellow ones and red pears.

I have some herbs in containers: mint, various chives (because I can't eat onions I use chives instead) and I have a tiny little bay tree in a pot. I have coriander but like P above, mine also bolts almost as soon as it has leaves. So frustrating!! I've had sage, thyme and rosemary in pots before, though mine are wild and free these days.

There are cucumber varieties that you can train up a trellis - they would probably do well in a container.

Gardening!! \o/

(no subject)

Date: Saturday, March 16th, 2019 01:29 pm (UTC)
auroracloud: Nyssa of Traken in a white top, looking away from camera (tree in spring)
From: [personal profile] auroracloud
Oh, cherries. I love cherries so much! Wish I could grow them somewhere, but I lack a garden, and also most cherries don't do well in these latitudes. (I think only sour cherries survive in Finland; mind you, I love sour cherries, so I wouldn't mind, but for some reason I never see Finnish sour cherries for sale anywhere. Maybe they don't make it far out of the gardens because people eat them!)

(no subject)

Date: Saturday, March 16th, 2019 02:22 am (UTC)
hrafn: (Default)
From: [personal profile] hrafn
My outdoor plants are all in pots because I'm renting and I don't want to worry about the trauma of digging them up (again; most of them were in the ground before I moved here). Some of those pots have ended up with multiple plants, 'cause I've brought home bits of sedums and sempervivums from work and stuck them into open spaces with the roses and sage and wherever else they will fit. Some of my roses have been in pots for longer than the last move, and have been sharing space with chives or pansies.

I do have an intentional container garden which is a water garden! It's a 30-gallon tub with a water lily, one or two varieties of rush, a water-loving forget-me-not, and once it warms up a bit, I'll put the Sarracenias back out there. (They've overwintered in a cold, enclosed porch where it won't drop below 20F.)

(no subject)

Date: Saturday, March 16th, 2019 03:20 pm (UTC)
hrafn: (Default)
From: [personal profile] hrafn
Most of my potted roses are miniatures, and this is their first winter here in Bend. They made it through several Portland, OR, winters, which means they've gotten through some periods of lows in the teens, but we have a lot more of that chill here. I guess I'll know pretty soon how they've come through this winter!

Two of them are Weeks roses and they were already full size, in ~2 gallon pots. I want to put them into 5 or 6 gal size, since 2 gal seems pretty small and dries out pretty fast here.

The other minis started out as a $5 pot of mini roses. I separated them out into bigger pots and eventually moved them so each has its own 5 or 6 gal size. They've all stayed smaller than the Weeks roses but bloom for many more months. They may not really need pots that big, except I worry about the hot dry summers here.

The other 3 potted roses I have were all living in the ground when I dug them up last spring for the move here. One's a climbing rose that started from a cutting about 3 years back, suffered badly from being dug up, but recovered well enough over the summer to put out 1 bloom. The other two were essentially abandoned/unwanted plants in the yard of my last place, and constantly being weedwhacked. One of them also got shocked badly by being dug up, but survived; the other was still mostly dormant when I potted it up. I don't know how big either is likely to get, though the one has some pretty beefy roots and lower stem, so I think it must be a fairly old plant.

(no subject)

Date: Saturday, March 16th, 2019 05:46 am (UTC)
lyr: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lyr
I am always a fan of putting lattices up my patio fence and letting cucumber and zucchini grow up them; sometimes a few sweet potatoes can fit up those lattices, too, but they do tend to take over if I'm not careful. Then I stick some nice yellow squash and bell peppers in the ground, maybe some snow peas if there's room. And it's always nice to have a couple of citrus trees in big pots that can be dragged inside if it freezes in the winter. Nothing smells more heavenly than an orange tree in bloom.

(no subject)

Date: Saturday, March 16th, 2019 01:26 pm (UTC)
auroracloud: (budding twigs)
From: [personal profile] auroracloud
I have a balcony that's reasonably good for balcony gardening, but it has varied very much depending on the year how much I get done there. On some years I've successfully grown some herbs and flowers there. This year, since I have more time at my hands right now, I'm thinking of trying to grow some herbs and flowers from the seed. I'm trying to have at least rosemary, basil, oregano, thyme, chives, and maybe parsley, lavender, and mint - I've had good experiences with most of these in the past years, and find uses for them. For flowers, I'm mostly thinking of pelargoniums and marigolds, maybe get a potted rose or two from a gardening/floral shop. I'd love to try growing some vegetables, though. I'm planning to experiment with lettuce, and possibly kale and tomatoes. I'm not sure my balcony would work for tomatoes (it might not get enough sunlight), but there can't be that much harm in giving it a try!

But if it turns out I don't have the spoons or the time for all that, I'm hoping to at least have a few different herbs and a couple of types of flowers. I already bought some marigold seeds, and I know where to easily get a few pelargoniums/geraniums when it's time for them. I'm not awfully good at keeping plants alive, but herbs and pelargoniums tend to survive my modest gardening skills.

(no subject)

Date: Monday, March 18th, 2019 02:31 am (UTC)
chickiedeare: (Default)
From: [personal profile] chickiedeare
I had a lovely windowbox for a while, until one of the cats (I will never know which one, but I have a strong suspicion) got annoyed that the plants were getting all the good sunlight and peed on all my herbs.

I liked having basil, cilantro, green onions, and rosemary. I replanted some lemongrass stubs - they didn't do well but it was worth a try. and lemon verbena even though I don't cook with it, because it smells so nice!

(no subject)

Date: Monday, March 18th, 2019 06:41 am (UTC)
amuletica: (Default)
From: [personal profile] amuletica
Well, I live in a completely different climate, so not sure how much of my advice would be valid. However, if there is one thing I've learned from growing tomatoes is invest in really, really good support, trellis or cages. Stakes/sticks not so much.
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