A Month (or so) of Growing Things

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A couple weeks ago I walked into the living room and thought – “jeez-it smells like dirt in here.”  Then, of course, it occurred to me that it should smell like dirt.  After all, we had 15 kilograms worth of dirt in pots sunning themselves beneath the living room window.  Totally normal.

Having been unsure and unoptomistic (is that a word?) about the progress of my balcony garden, I’ve really taken the avoidance route when it comes to mentioning it on the blog.  After giving all of the little seedlings a safe and cozy start in the living room window, I have slowly transferred them out to the balcony to a fancy system I rigged up with pots hanging against the side of the building.

There have only been two true casualties.  The first is the broccoli.  It never even really grew, so that one is definitely not meant for me and my Bangkok balcony.

The second is the lettuce.  There’s just no way that its tender, cool-weather loving leaves will survive in this climate.  And really, sometimes I’m even surprised that people survive in this climate.  Just kidding.  (Kind of.)

I do have a bunch of lettuce in a window box that I kept inside, and that seems to be doing rather well.  At the least, it looks pretty.  And will hopefully look even prettier when the two small tomato plants on either end of the planter start to produce some tomatoes.  (I kept a couple tomato plants inside to see how they do compared to those that are out in the heat.)

Out on the balcony, the tomato and pepper plants seem to be the most promising.  There is still a serious question about whether or not they’ll get enough light, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed.  I planted a few plants upside down, as I read they would happily grow this way.  The tomato plant immediately tried to turn itself around and grow upright again, but hopefully it gets used to its new posture.

The squash is barely hanging on, which could be the result of any number of factors, but every time I think it’s down for the count it seems to grow some new healthy looking leaves.  We’ll see about that one.  (Here’s a squash and sweet pea plant sharing some space.  Gotta have roommates out there if everyone’s gonna fit.)

And finally, the beans.  It’s too hot for the sweet peas (I anticipated that one), so they just won’t grow.  Some of the green beans were doing great and then petered out in the span of 24 hours.  One green bean plant is still doing fairly well, and stretching itself out towards the sun, so he might be the winner.

All hope is not lost for my home-grown balcony salad, but we’ve got a ways to go.

Other posts on this “garden”:

Week 2: Seedlings

Week 1: Planting

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About Jess Smith

Jess is the recipe creator and photographer at InquiringChef.com. She spent nearly a decade as the Chief Recipe Developer for the award-winning meal planning app Cook Smarts. Her colorful, healthyish recipes have been featured in popular online publications including Parade, Hallmark, and HuffPost.

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