Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day 2009: Edible Porch Gardens

Happy Earth Day!

I thought it was going to be hard to surpass our switched from paper towels to cloth napkins last year but I think we've done it. The cloth napkin change has been permanent and now we use old newspapers for cleaning glasses mirrors and windows and reusable microfiber clothes for dusting. We have also been members of a CSA, J.R. Organics, the last year and have greatly enjoyed our biweekly csa boxes. More recently, we took the plunge and planted a few edibles on our porch as the next big "being green" step. Looking for some help on container gardening, check out The Bountiful Container by McGee and Stuckey.

On the left are our lovely, flowering tomato plants. We have two kinds heirloom and better boy, both from Whole Foods. On the right is our little Serrano pepper plant. Both the pepper and the tomatoes are going to grow up to 6 feet tall and so we planted them in large containers. TEB scrounged eucalyptus branches so we could make a support triangle for the tomatoes and I suspect we might have to do the same thing for the pepper. I mixed in a bit of compost with the organic soil, 1:7 ratio.

The compost bin was set up about 8 months ago and the 100 red wriggler worms that we got from a friend have tripled into a nice population of worms willing to eat about 1/4 of our organic kitchen waste, more on containing your kitchen scraps here. The rest we throw in our apartment complex's community passive compost bin. We get rid of about 1 bag of garbage a week and that feels great. Above, you can see our compost bin on our front porch behind our shade-loving, drier dirt herbs (sage, rosemary, and oregano).
Here is our compost bin after some cantelope fruit seeds were thrown in there. I highly recommend the Wriggle Wranch kit that has several stackable bins and comes with corn husk starter (order your worms separately or snag some from a friend like we did). In the San Diego area you can buy the WRANCH at the Solana Center for Environmental Innovation on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am - 4pm.

photo credit: Cayenne 04.22.09

1 comment:

gotomakan said...

I'm so jealous of your worm farm!!