Monday, July 11, 2011

Urban Gardening Part II

Planning your own urban garden is quite simple with a little help from your local gardening shop and some careful research.

The most important steps to beginning your garden are:

· First, decide what you want to plant

· Second, research peak planting season for each plant

· And third, research the best method of planting for each variety

Research using a search engine had seemed like the best solution at first, but I soon found that the immense amount of information on the Internet from bloggers and websites is not always valid and can be overwhelming. You can save yourself the keystrokes and simply read the back of the seed packets. Instructions for planting will always be on the package. If peak-planting season is not provided, the staff at gardening stores are usually happy to help and enjoy sharing tips. If you find you have missed planting season don’t fret; instead buy starter plant.

The clerk at my local gardening shop explained that purchasing potting soil for a potted garden is key. The potting soil locks in moisture and nutrients. If you are using smaller pots I advise filling them with solely potting soil. If you are working with larger pots, as I am, fill the bottom third of the pots with regular dirt from your backyard and fill the top layer of the pots with potting soil. This helps to keep costs low.

Having missed planting-season, I bought tomato starter plants and planted basil, rosemary and pepper seeds. They are all maturing nicely and I cannot wait to incorporate these fresh slow food ingredients into delicious summer recipes. Picking your own tomatoes off your balcony for a salad to be prepared that afternoon while peering at the Boston skyline is truly an urban gardening luxury and a perk to being “green."