A Small Unit Garden: some ideas
Tub and Pot Gardening
Over a year ago I moved into a unit with a small garden. It's been great fun getting it the way I would like it to be, although, as gardeners will know, that does not last for long. There is always something else to do in a garden. It makes me wonder why I bothered to buy a little table and two chairs. The moment I sit, I see something else that needs doing! My Mother used to tell me that if I pulled out ten weeds a day, I would keep it under control. I'm not so sure about that, but I guess a little every day does help.
However, soon my flowers, vegetables and herbs had taken up all the available space, and I wanted to put in more. It's such fun watching things grow, and even more useful when we can eat the produce. I must admit that my zucchinis rarely get as far as the kitchen. I have usually crunched them before I reach the back door. Fresh food is so delicious.
I needed more space, so I expanded into tubs and pots which have gradually been added to and now line the pathway. They practically double the size of my garden and I can control what goes into them. The soil in the garden is sandy and what moisture is retained is drained by the roots of a row of silver birches the other side of the fence. But with using containers I can mix up a really good soil for them. I use bags of potting mix, garden soil, chook pellets and a small handful of moisture - retaining beads.
My 501 Pets
In a unit, we are limited in the number and size of pets we can have, so I have my small, indoor dog and five hundred other pets. Yes, they are worms! I invested in a Worm Farm and although I only bought a minimum number of worms, it works well. I can recommend it. It's a great way to recycle most of my kitchen waste and the vegetables just thrive on their drinks of Worm Tea. They're hooked on it.
The Farm has a little tap at the bottom and I leave it turned on with a bucket underneath. Each time the bucket is about a third full, I add some water and voila! Worm Tea. There are some rules in caring for worms, though.
How to Care for a Worm Farm
It's quite simple, really. Worms don't like big changes in temperature, so it's best to set the Farm up in a shady spot, or even in the garage. A well-kept Worm Farm does not smell.
The worms are living creatures and need to be fed. They even have likes and dislikes. They love vegetable scraps, peelings, fruit, skins, tea-leaves, and even tea-bags. I add a few weeds from the garden, spent flowers from indoor vases, torn up newspapers and crushed egg-shells. Variety is important. A handful of soil sprinkled on top helps and they do like some moisture, so the contents of the vase goes in as well. Once a week a teaspoonful of Worm Farm Conditioner may be sprinkled over the scraps, but it isn't absolutely necessary. They really don't like onions or acidic foods like citrus. The worms may be small, but they eat up to half their body-weight each day! Baby worms grow to maturity in about three months.
Most Worm Farms come with instructions about how to set up the Farm and give advice about when to add another level to the Farm and when to clean them out so you can use the castings as well as the Tea. I can recommend them, they are easy to care for, great at recycling scraps into compost, and so good for the garden.
Gardens and Gardening
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