by Helene Malmsio
(Melbourne, Victoria, Australia)
container gardening under the pagoda
This is the way I do Square Foot Gardening nowadays. IN BUCKETS!
I'll be posting more images and updates as the garden grows, it just happens that I had a few pics on file from when I began this process three months ago.
I've never been very successful with my traditional raised bed square foot gardens in the past, they were OK but not as good as I hoped for... but since using this bucket growing, and putting them in my square raised gardens for convenience, I'm getting much better results.
Can't wait to start harvesting root veg simply by lifting a bucket (and plastic bag for early potatoes) instead of the usual grubbing around at ground level that breaks my back.
And in the past the containers and pots I used were huge and horrible to move or work with, now its simple to do. (Watch this channel below to learn more about this magic gardening method!)
Love this HGV channel so much!
HGV Square Foot Gardening The Next Generation Start to Finish
His pace slows down my chattering monkey brain and I get into a good place mentally, and Molly the potato loving dog is a joy to see ... breathe - LOL!
I even tried his Composting method! I put waste soil in canvas bags and piled them along one wall, and just added my veg and fruit scraps on top every day, and when I started the community garden planting in February I had lots of soil ready in bags (including big cherry tomato plants from seeds in compost - lol).. so I began just putting out the bags to really RAISE the beds.
When they are done Ill just take the bags of soil out and replace them with Winter veg pots already growing.
So, I'm growing everything in buckets now, along with my fruit trees in big rubbish bin tubs.
Just collected 16 lemons from my dwarf tree, and the Imperial Mandarins are ripening.
Collected my Golden Delicious Apples a while back, and this Summer got a good harvest of apricots and some peaches, but missed out on my sweet yellow plums because the birds got them first.
Did get some figs from my dwarf tree because I covered them with mesh onion bags after the birds ate the first one .. Nothing yet from all my avocado trees all from seeds apart from one Bacon avocado... maybe next year *sigh*
Gave my Pomegranates to Angelo who helps me in the community garden.
Ate all my raspberries and blueberries - LOL.
Harvested some beautiful crisp red Capsicums last week, along with some of the remaining cherry tomatoes and lettuces. Still more to come from the rose beds out front of house - lol
Thanks to seeing his ideas with bucket (and canvas bag growing), I've even been inspired to grow from seed successfully, and for the first time ever I now have a full WINTER garden I have high hopes for.
I've been placing big water bottles around the peas and beans and capsicums in the Secret Garden to keep them cool in summer heat, and now to ward off the winter frosts... definitely helps to maintain more even temperatures around the plants and the soil in the extremes of the weather seasons.
My vegemite water snail traps have not done much, since every time I water, I dilute the mix.
So, I've bought some yeast packets, since its the yeast that attracts the snails, and after a weekly winter watering I'll simply sprinkle some fresh dry yeast granules into the little containers of water set into the soil.
I'll let you know how that goes. I'm happy to share some of my crop with the garden grubs, but not ALL of them - lol.
I feel so much more in control now... if something doesn't grow or is eaten by snails, just replace it with another bucket of something else already up and running.
And this way your 'garden beds' are PORTABLE... (move them around when messing around with the *&$@#* pagodas that keep breaking up)... or move your 'garden bed' to wherever the sun is best, or to get them away from frost etc.
I used to struggle with my big pots to move them etc. now I just use the 10-12" pots and my life is so much easier.
Good Idea: I also bought a dozen traditional house buckets and just cut drain holes in them, as they are only $1 each! much cheaper than garden pots, and they have convenient handles to carry them around with.
I'm amazed that I'll get good crops from small pots, didn't think that was possible til seeing the results of this gardener on the channel above.
I have my pots at home under cover of the pagoda to prevent the Autumn frost, and will put clear plastic boxes on top to make mini hot houses for winter... and put more pots in my hot house.
I just put another mini hot house over the old raised bed with my dozens of Asparagus plants, and recently added more spinach varieties to grow in-between them. Baby asparagus sprouting everywhere, so hard to not pick them yet!!! Next Spring I'll be eating asparagus for months.
Hopefully the hot house will keep a good Winter spinach crop coming.
Have spent the last 3 months of Autumn growing seeds and planting into the community garden raised beds, with my pots and bags of soil.
Will cover some of them from frost with cloth over frames I think, or maybe just use my reliable clear plastic boxes over the top. Just a bit of a pain when watering if I use boxes.
Have been harvesting lots of herbs and tomatoes, lettuce, spinach etc past 3 months, but focused on creating a winter garden for my first time, since I had missed the Spring planting season for the community garden.
My friend Sandra kept sending me packets of seeds, so I was finally inspired to become successful at raising seeds in plastic containers on the window sill!!
Now growing lots more new herbs and varieties of spinach/sorrell/ chards, and even cauliflower, brussel sprouts, bok choy, leek, spring onion, soon hope to harvest my radishes and beetroots and peas and broad beans and dwarf beans. (mostly all from SEEDS - whodathunkit??)
Also have a couple of pots of Horta (spare veg seeds) that I can just clip from and fry up!
And have over a dozen pots of potatoes in plastic bagged pots to begin grubbing out in July+
And since my peach, apricot, apple, trees are all losing their leaves, I'm planting peas and beans in the pots to climb the bare branches and grow me some food during winter... with some radishes and beets and bok choy at the base as well.
For someone with no formal garden space... just pots and bins on a patio yard, I'm doing pretty well, hey?
Sorry for the rambling, with no order or reason to my story here, it grew from a simple comment on the video below... and hey presto, ended up with a looooong ramble here. I'll try to post pictures and updates as I go along, so you can see how I go.
Some pictures above are of when I began re-setting up the "Secret Garden" community garden that had gone to pot... now it is officially a POT garden, LOL.
And some pics of my patio yard with pots and bins container gardening. Doesn't yet show my new small pots and buckets in action.
Learn more here about traditional container gardening
If you also love this kind of gardening, leave a comment below and let me know what you are enjoying doing in your garden!
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