City Gardens

With the mad rush to make ‘Bio-fuels’ in an attempt to plug the gap created by peak oil and the corresponding fall in supply to meet continually rising demand, food prices are rocketing up, especially in the poorer countries. But the era of cheap food is coming to an end for all of us. However, with a bit of ‘get up and go’ it is not hard to make your own food almost for free, even if you don’t have a garden. All you need is a bit of land – it can be covered in concrete, or tarmac, or whatever, as long as it gets a bit of sun. It could be a terrace, a window box, a car park space – anywhere will do for your City Garden.

Step by step, this is what you do…

  1. Make a topless and bottomless box to cover the space you have. The depth should be about 50cm, you can use railway sleepers, breeze blocks anything to define the sides.
  2. Go to any place where you can dig up enough soil to (almost) fill the box. The soil quality doesn’t matter.
  3. Buy or make a worm compost bin. (I strongly recommend the ‘Can o Worms’ model). Into the worm bin goes all your uncooked kitchen waste (apart from citrus fruit peel) that the worms turn into compost.
  4. Take compost from the worm bin and mix it into your soil.
  5. Plant whatever you fancy, vegetables, herbs or even medicinal plants. If you visit your local garden centre, they will tell you what you can plant when and will sell you the seed and often advise you on varieties. In mine as I write is the following…Peppers, Dill, Coriander, Basil, Garlic, Chives, Fenugreek, Lettuces x 4 varieties, Parsley, Mint, and even a Bush Tomato for early cropping.
  6. Add water and watch your food grow – very satisfying.
  7. Eat your food, happy in the knowledge that it will probably taste better than shop bought anyway.
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