July 27, 2009,
T.W. asks from Chicago, IL on July 26, 2009
L.B. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
I planted tomatoes and cucumbers in a pot for the first time this year. They are doing great. As long as you have a sunny spot to put the pot in , they should do great. There are a few things that you have to do to the pot to get good drainage, you can google all sorts of information about that. Happy Gardening!!
J.S. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
Lots of good advice here. There is also the EarthBox. We were given one as a gift and have tomatoes growing this summer. It is not completely organic, however; it requires fertilizer. Comes with everything you need except plants and has excellent directions. You can use it for planting almost anything. I have a friend who has several on a balcony.
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S.K. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
You've gotten a lot of great advise already.....I just wanted to add that the Topsy Turvy way of planting reequires a very very strong hook. I tried two of them this year and I'll be buy more next year, they work great!!
E.C. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
Yes, I am doing so for the second year in a row. I have had a lot of luck with fresh herbs - fresh cilantro, parsley, chives & mint grown from seeds. Found I had better luck this year buying green peppers and tomato plants that were already seeded in a little pot at the store - just transferred them to bigger pots & they're doing great. You also have to be sure to put stakes in & tie with twisty ties as they get bigger...
L.C. answers from Chicago on July 26, 2009
It's too late in the season for tomatoes, but you could do basil right now - try to buy it big - and chives - chives are hardy all year. You might even do zucchini and cucumbers if you get them in right away. I've grown zucchini in a planter and it did very well.
In September, you can plant beets, lettuce, radishes, spinach and chard - they are all cold weather vegetables. if you put them in the first week of September, they will be fine into October, even November. Then you can plant them again in March. You can buy bush tomatoes or cherry tomatoes for a planter next year - these are hybrid specifically for container gardening or small gardens. You can put a cherry tomato in a hanging planter and it will vine. Now they have hanging upside down planters for tomatoes - my neighbor has one - I haven't seen how his tomato is doing, but I'm going to check it out.
S.E. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
Kind of late in the year to get started planting veggies but yes you can plant veggies in pots or tomatoes, pepper and cucumbers can be grown upside down in a Topsy Turvy or one you make yourself. http://honestinfomercialreviews.com/home/plant-and-garden...
I plant both patio tomatoes in pots and up side down. I use to do cucumbers in pots. There are seeds you can by to grown cucumbers to pots. the vines are not as spread out but the cucumbers are the same size. Green and hot peppers I do in pots. You can grow lettuce in pots also. The one thing you need to remember when planting veggies in pots is they need regular watering and need to be fertilized. I use miracle grow. Also make sure to mix good soil with peat moss and some sand to get good drainage in each pot.
I saw they still had some patio tomatoes for sale at Walmart but most other veggies needed to be started in the Spring. Start planning for next year. There is lots of information on line.
J.F. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
Do you have sun? Then yes you can grow veggies & herbs on your balcony. There are books available on container gardening. It helps to know things like how much sun plants need or how large of a container they need.
You can also use an Earth box (www.earthbox.com) Our local park district uses Earth boxes in the children's garden.
M.M. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
Yes! you can grow vegetables from your balcony. Depending on the size you are working with, you can either plant them in individual terracotta pots or larger planter box. I would avoid using plastic containers due the potential of BPA being in them. You want to use a container that can drain (holes in bottom)
Easiest to grow are tomatoes, bell peppers (though it is getting late to plant as they take a few months to mature). Cucumber bush plants that are made for containers. Any herb will grow great.. basil, cilantro, sage..
Any plant that grow vines (likes squash, eggplant, etc, don't usually do well because they run out of room to grow).
You need to water daily and make sure the plants get a lot of sunlight. Also, make sure you start with actual plants instead of seeds, unless you plant in early summer. Ideally, start your garden in June so it has many monthes of warm weather to grow and enjoy!
G.P. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
I don't see why you can't. I don't have a balcony but I have a patio, no real yard. I have in hanging baskets, in one cucumbers and I have had three grow and and harvested two of them and more growing. In another hanging basket I have two cherry tomato plants which are producing tons of tomatoes. I have in six different planters, Three snap beans (in one), green peppers, early girl tomatoes, grape tomatoes, big beef tomatoes, and in a big barrel planter I have six broccoli plants. All of them are bearing fruit, I have harvested broccoli, cucumbers, grape tomatoes, early girl tomatoes and snap beans. The hanging baskets are not the topsy turvys they are actual baskets with coconut husk liners. I have in troughs hanging from my fence, basil, oregano, chives, dill, lemon balm and lemon verbena, oh and some bibb lettuce.
I was amazed at how much I could grow and would do well in pots and planters. I have always done peppers and tomatoes. This year I wanted to experiment and so I tried the cukes and tomatoes in the hanging baskets, the snap beans, broccoli and lettuce. It has been fun and well worth the time put into it. My kids love picking the tomatoes from the vines and eating them.
Good luck in whatever you try and keep me posted on your progress. I'd like to know if you try something I haven't and know how it works out for you. I might just try it next year.
L.Z. answers from Chicago on July 27, 2009
We grow veggies on our porch. We LOVE the EarthBox. Go to their website and check it out! It is very cool. It is probably too late for you to start this year, but maybe next year.......Good luck!! SAHM of 1 and 2 yr old