Saturday, April 4, 2015

My Little Deck Garden

A non-Eve post. It involves going outside but only as far as my deck which is still attached to the house.


I took up gardening last year. I decided to do so in July which was somewhat dumb. I had a very small harvest, a little bit of lettuce and a handful of tomatoes. Most of my plants just didn't have the time to grow. Some, like my onions, suffered from being planted late. My squash died to squash moths. However, I really enjoyed the journey and there was something amazing about growing my own food.

I've always wanted to garden. My mother had a garden when I was a child, as did my neighbors. Over the years, my mom would occasionally raise tomato on our porch but she was always at war with squirrels.  When I moved to my previous home I wanted to garden. however, I learned that living in the forest made raising food a very tough prospect. Now, back in suburbia, I decided that I'd buy some pots and some dirt and a few seedlings and see if I had any type of green thumb. Such was my project last year.

I really enjoyed it. Where I live there is not much in the way of a squirrel issue. My tomato were unmolested. I think however, it was my watermelon that truly made me decide that I needed to do it properly the next year. When my watermelons budded tiny watermelons the size of my thumb, I was in love. Who knew baby plants were so adorable?

A few years ago I saw a raised plant bed at Sams Club. It wasn't the right time to get it and as with anything amazing that you find it is no longer made. I spend the winter searching for something similar. I liked the raised plant bed. It helped keep fragile things away from my creatures who use the deck to go outside. My dogs are not destructive with plants but a moment of having to deal with someone down the street daring to exit their home and they could crush delicate things.

What I did find was the Palram Plant Inn. Its a raised garden with a cover. The cover excited me after my squash moth incident the previous year. While not large enough for everything I wanted to grow it would be a great base. I'd use pots for the tomato and more vine like plants such as the watermelon that want to spread out.

My husband ordered said plant inn for me back in Febuary. It's been sitting here waiting for me to open it for a few weeks. I waited until after Fanfest and for a nice weekend because I'd need to build it outside. When I came back from Fanfest I planted seedlings and I'm happy to say that I have an 85% sucess rate so far. The only things I am not seeing are the Jalapeno's and Onions. I'll give them another try if I don't get anything by the end of the week.


The seedlings are in the window sill where they get the sunlight all day but have the warmth of the house. I germinated my last set outside, however it was July and plenty warm. This time, when I got back from Iceland we had several days with below freezing nights. I was happy that the little starter plants worked out.

I'm growing onions, three types of lettuce, zucchini, cucumbers, yellow squash, watermelon, cantaloupe, peas, jalapenos, butternut squash, beefsteak tomatoes, and yellow cherry tomato! Hopefully!

Yesterday was wet and raining. This morning it spat but then the skys cleared into a beautiful, pale blue spring sky. It's been around 60 (14) and bright and sunny. A lovely change after rain, clouds, and cold winter days. I washed the dogs (to their horror) and went to build my little green house.



A little bit awkward at times. A few mistakes but nothing horrible. I dumped my pots into it. I did plastic pots last year and I'm switching to ceramic this year. In general, I'm super pleased with it. I hope to get seedlings moved in soon enough. The yellow squash will probably go first. They grow aggressively fast and.

I'm pleased with my project and wanted to share. I need to sweep the deck and stuff but that can be done later. The area under it is hollow so I can shove excess deck things there and make the deck look a bit neater then it did last year.

4 comments:

  1. I really like the style of raised bed you chose. I have used similar setups with good success in the past. I have always found growing and harvesting food for myself and my family to be a very rewarding experience. Gardening in a suburban environment definitely poses unique challenges and I wish you the best of luck on your adventures in the garden.

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  2. I have something similar but it's indoor with 400W fruit light. Also i'm not growing cucumbers :)

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  3. Suburban gardeners unite! http://imgur.com/gallery/IH9baFX
    Florida weather means my tomatoes are a little further along, but yours should be there soon. Look into making yourself a "worm tower" if you can; best fertilizer ever.

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