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Hello friends!

One of our admins, @poVoq, has set up a wiki in his spare time for slrpnk.net. For the time being, editing is limited to moderators-only. However, @poVoq has also created an EtherPad that we can use to work together on it!

I went ahead and started a /c/BalconyGardening wiki but we need your ideas, knowledge, and experience to make it a helpful addition to the community. So, I am proposing that we use an Etherpad with the name BalconyWiki to collaborate on additions and improvements to the wiki. I'd ask that you please add your Lemmy username at the top-right of etherpad when editing to keep it accountable. :)

Any and all suggestions are welcome, as long as they fit within the BalconyGardening theme. I would love it if we could set up a starting guide for those who want to set up their first balcony garden!

Here are some ideas of sections we can develop:

  • Getting Started - for those new to balcony gardening
  • No Balcony? No Problem! - other ways community members can garden
  • Common Issues - and solutions!
  • Recommended Crops - to offset food costs, to resist pests, for high-yield to share with others, etc.
  • DIY/Upcycled Solutions - such as re-using plastic waste for planters

I hope you're all enjoying your day and I can't wait to hear your ideas!

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This one isn't for balconies, but it is for apartments, so I hope it makes sense that I am posting this here.

With window hydroponics, you take:

  • used water bottles
  • a pump kit (with tubing and joints)
  • a bucket of water
  • growing substrate
  • a hanging anchor kit
  • silicone steel tube
  • chain (for hanging)
  • tools (electric drill, plier, hole punch)

... and convert them into a tiny food garden that hangs by your window. This gives food options for those who live in apartment’s that might not have had the choice before.

You'll of course need plants that do not get too big (such as dwarf tomato plants instead of full-sized). If your window does not get enough sunlight, you may also have to supplement that with grow lights and a plug timer.

You do not need to buy an expensive kit. There are DIY sources everywhere, including this video explaining to use a pool noodle to create a growing substrate(an option to save an old pool noodle from the trash) instead of rockwool or pebbles.

I have not tried this myself, but thought I would share it in case it helps someone.

More Info:

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Planter boxes (lemmy.sdf.org)

If you are using larger planter boxes, what material and size did you choose? I have a basically rectangular balcony and would like to put a planter box across each of the short ends, perhaps wooden or even concrete. Any wisdom from experience out there?

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photo of small potato shoots emerging from a large black planter

photo of overgrown potato shoots coming out of a large black planter

pink potato flower

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I repotted my sugar snap peas into a larger upcycled kitty litter container that I found in a dumpster. There was plenty of space, so I added radishes that only take 23 days to mature to maximize my use of space. What are your favourite companion plants?

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I have had earwigs eating my balcony garden crops, so I decided to try a solution I found online: add 50/50 soy sauce and oil to a container and leave it overnight. It was filled with earwigs the next morning! So I am setting up another trap with an empty tofu dessert container.

That being said, earwigs aren't universally bad. They help decompose plant material in a compost pile. However on my balcony, they were doing more harm than good. The ladybugs can stay :P

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I just harvested the compost box on my balcony, the little helpers are very happy:

I started it 4 years ago and use the humus for a little balcony chaos:

You can build one for yourself or buy the kit on the internet.

Either way, it's fun playing in dirt, even for a grown person. You should try!

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submitted 2 weeks ago* (last edited 2 weeks ago) by catlover@sh.itjust.works to c/balconygardening@slrpnk.net

Noticed that some bees climb in at the bottom of my planters and dig themselves in. They go in and out multiple times a day, sometimes seem to carry some cut leaves. It seems like its the same bee, never seen more than one at the same spot, but multiple planters have these bees and holes.

What are they doing? Could they mean harm to my plants? Should I worry about my cat trying to catch them, and they stinging?

I also change the soil and the plant every year. Will I ruin their homes this way?

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Zone 8b

Varieties: Russian blue, white

Grown in potato planting bags for good drainage. They are in the process of flowering, and some have produced a fruit (very poisonous - do not eat it). Hoping for lots of potatoes this year 🙂

The floppy plants to the left are garlic (soft and hardneck Italian). They are fine; they got too tall and fell over.

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Alt: Photo of young green cherry tomatoes on a tomato plant on a balcony. The photo mostly shows green tomato plant foliage. There are some yellow tomato flowers in the top left corner of the frame.

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I had filled a pot with seedlings, so the nursery pots I found at the side of the road came in handy today. I split them into their own pots which I will give away to friends and family once they grow larger.

My goal is to grow marigolds from seed for the first time to enjoy their summer blooms and repel pests from my veggies.

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I got quite a large Bedroom Window that I like to keep open during the Night and I thought it would lend itself super nicely for some Strong and Nicely smelling aromatic plants just outside it, so that by proxy the room itself always has that lovely plant flavour.

The Window itself is on the Sunside and thusly is always flooded with Sun light. If possible, I'd also prefer something colourful so I got something lovely to look at as I wake up!

Any suggestions?

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Video Collection (slrpnk.net)

I do not have a balcony, but I thought I would share the videos I have collected in the past just in case they ended up helping someone. I just joined, so I am not sure how/if they can be embeded, so I will just put links.

Also, here is a website that might help.

“If it is a South or West-facing balcony, you’ll have sunshine almost all day, which means you can grow anything. An East facing balcony receives sunlight in the morning, which is sufficient for most greens, herbs, and root vegetables. On the contrary, a North-facing balcony usually remains shady throughout the year, and it isn’t easy to grow vegetables in the shade. However, you can still try lettuce, parsley, peas, cilantro, fenugreek, green onions, bok choy, and mustard greens.” BalconyGardenWeb

The image used was also sourced from that website.

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Here's my green balcony :)

I just started with hydroponics. Some of my plants are already in hydro, but most are still soil based.

I plan to convert future plants to hydro in the future, but right now, I wanna see how it goes.

Also, I will of course post an update in a few months, when the plants are bigger. Right now, they are all pretty young and some might not surive due to the transfer stress from soil to hydro.

What do I grow?

  • Weed (CBD, THC, autoflower and photoperiodic strains), some young ones in hydro, most in soil for now
  • Symbiotic plants, e.g. dill (mite repelling) or soy (nitrogen fixing)
  • Herbs (sage, parsley, basil, thai basil, etc.)
  • Strawberries
  • Cantaloupe
  • Berries
  • Chillies
  • Catnip
  • and more

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submitted 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago) by SoySaucePrinterInk@sh.itjust.works to c/balconygardening@slrpnk.net

They've been surprisingly easy. These Yukon gold potatoes grow fast!

Only 1 week ago:

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My SO and I have been planning to start a mushroom garden for awhile now. You can buy these kits with mushroom spawn in peg form, and you just drill holes in a log and hammer them in. I'd had big dreams of going along the bike path, adding them to all the dead logs there, until I learned how important it is to properly and thoroughly inoculate freshly-cut logs in order to make sure your fungus of choice is properly established and safe from the competition. This was a bit of a problem as we live in an apartment and the circumstances where I'd cut down a healthy tree are seriously slim, and don't include providing food for mushrooms.

But one of the perks of having a big family is that one of them is always doing yard work, and when one of their birch trees bought it in a recent snowstorm, I was ready to jump in and claim a few pieces. They were happy to get rid of it; they feel grey birch burns poorly - and I was happy to take some because it supposedly turns beautifully on the lathe and it's a suitable medium for shiitake mushrooms.

As an aside, I prepped one thinner piece for use on the lathe. I clamped it to the table and used a draw knife (and a regular carving knife) to strip off the bark, before painting the ends with wax. This helps prevent cracking and checking due to uneven drying from the ends, and spalting/mold/rot from moisture under the bark. Assuming it does as well as the maple and oak I've done previously, it'll be ready to use in a year or two.

Okay, back on to the mushrooms! We bought our kit from a company called Northspore who provided pretty thorough guidance. Their instructions said that logs 4-6" thick and 3-4' long would be good, and one of ours fit that nicely. The instructions also said our log had been cut at about the worst time, after the buds on the branches had begun to swell. So... sorry, mushrooms! Hopefully you'll figure out how to make that work.

They provided a drill bit, instructions on how deep to drill (1") and where (in staggered rows, each hole 4" apart, 2" from their neighboring rows, so it makes diamond patterns). I grabbed a drill and measuring tape and set about drilling all the holes.

(I also cut a couple risers out of a dead log to keep the mushroom log off the ground)

Once all the holes were drilled, we started hammering in the pegs with a rubber mallet.

I don't have great photos of this step (it was a lot of fun) but here's one of the log after we got them all driven in.

The last step was to seal all the pegs in place with melted wax. The kit provided powdered wax and a little fuzzball on a wire handle for applying it. We set up a double boiler on a hotplate and melted the wax while we added the pegs.

We hid our mushroom log in a shady forested spot near the apartment fence. If all goes well, I'll be back with mushroom pictures sometime next year.

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submitted 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago) by SoySaucePrinterInk@sh.itjust.works to c/balconygardening@slrpnk.net

Like hole size, placement, etc?

This is what I have in mind. Let me know what you think!

Edit: it's a 215mm (8.5") pot that I will be planting letteuce in

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submitted 3 months ago* (last edited 3 months ago) by toaster@slrpnk.net to c/balconygardening@slrpnk.net

The article is available in both English and Vietnamese.

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I'm launching a little balcony gardening project that involves water reservoirs. I don't have much experience with these kinds of projects, so I need a little help.

Due to some dimensional constraints, I will need two regular plastic containers (your typical storage containers), and I was hoping to get away with only including a way to fill one of them. That means I will need to connect it to the other in some way. So I thought I would just drill a hole in both of them and stick a pipe between them.

  1. What is the best way to drill holes in plastic without risking any splitting?
  2. How do I make sure that the holes are water sealed afterwards? Can I glue around the pipe and plastic box?
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How to Get Your Apartment Off the Grid (solar.lowtechmagazine.com)

Although slightly off-topic, I decided to post this since it applies to balcony gardens and indoor small-scale gardens alike.

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Balcony Gardening

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Welcome to c/BalconyGardening @ slrpnk.net!

A young community dedicated to balcony gardening.


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Show off that vertical veggie garden 35 stories high. Or that bucket of potatoes you're proud of. Perhaps some fall mums that have been catching your eye through the sliding door into your living room. Any and all balcony gardens are welcome! Come and show your's off because we love to see it. :)

We also welcome ideas, tips, and items which have helped you in your balcony gardening journey. No balcony? Feel free to join in with your container garden with limited space too!



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