The Kitchen Gardener: The Windowbox Salad Garden
Window Box Salad Garden
Do not let a lack of space keep you from gardening. As long as you have the will, and a little space, you can grow. I am in the process of moving from a house with a large backyard to a third floor apartment with a balcony.
We want the smaller space and the location of this apartment is ideal. The only two things we insisted on were good indoor lights and a balcony. We got both.
Indoors I will be able to grow African violets and maybe a few cherry tomatoes and salad greens.
On the balcony, there will be more cherry tomatoes, some cucumbers and a salad greens garden. The salad greens are an essential part of my kitchen garden as they supply us with healthy and tasty food, for weeks.
I like a bit of spice in my salads and will most likely grow mesclun and arugula. All will do well in a container. Mesclun is a mix of assorted small, young salad leaves and containers allow you to grow you own mesclun mix.
Arugula is a cold hardy plant which makes it ideal for this climate zone. The balcony is on the third floor and is likely to experience strong and cool winds so I want plants that will thrive in these conditions as long as I give them what they need.
The window box will not sit on top of the balcony railing but be placed in hangers which will be attached to the railing. This allows me to use, and I will likely build my own, window boxes, probably three, that are wider than placing them on top of the railing would allow.
It is important to measure the width of the railing before buying the hangers (brackets) and to be sure the hooks are wide enough and strong enough to hold the boxes.
The window boxes will be six inches wide and three feet long and about four inches deep.
The balcony is right off the kitchen so it will only take a few steps to harvest the leaves I need for that night’s salad.
One way to plant the window box is to use pots and put the soil and the plants in the pots and then put the pots in the window box. An advantage to this method is you do not need to line the window box to protect it from the water. You will need to drill a drainage hole or two into the box to allow extra water to run through.
If I decide not to build my own window boxes on the market, some quiet expensive that I can purchase. No matter which choice I make regarding the boxes themselves, there will be a salad window box garden on my balcony as soon as the weather permits.
- Container Salad Greens Garden
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