Learning

  • The ONE thing you MUST do when starting a new container garden 4 comments

    One of the first things I did when I started growing food on my balcony was to spend a lot of time and effort building a huge container out of wood. I later discovered that the place I'd built it got less sun than anywhere else on the balcony. Big mistake! The lesson I learnt [...]

  • Six lessons from a difficult growing year 11 comments

    If you've had a difficult year trying to grow food, you're not alone. In the UK, low light levels and a cold, wet summer have made it one of the worst growing years for decades. For those of you growing in other parts of the world, you may have experienced even more difficult challenges. If [...]

  • The Balcony of Bangladesh – in London! 3 comments

      Imagine growing up in a tropical climate like that of Bangladesh. Your family has a strong history of food growing and you have enough land to supply all your fruit and vegetables. Seeds are bursting to sprout and grow at almost anytime of year. Then imagine moving to a small  flat in London with [...]

  • How much can you grow on a balcony? 4 comments

    Over the summer I found time to analyse last year's harvests from my small balcony and window sills (more details in 2010 growing diary). Below is a table that shows you the weight of each of the main crops. The table also shows you what this equates to in terms of typical supermarket packs. As [...]

  • Eight pieces of learning 3 comments

    I love the way you are always learning when growing. Here's eight lessons from the last twelve months (May 2010 - May 2011) from the Vertical Veg balcony and window sills. 1.The most valuable and productive crops were: salad (£330), tomatoes (£250), and herbs (£133). Runner beans (£47) and courgettes (£25) also produced good yields [...]

  • Vertical Allotments – what’s the cost? 4 comments

    How much does it cost in time and money to create a high yielding vertical allotment? I estimate it will cost me £190 and 170 hours this year to build and run my balcony and window sill allotment. Assuming I harvest £800 food over the year, this means that, after costs, I ‘earn’ £3.60 for [...]