Urban Farming at Home – Part 2: Watching it grow
Some time has passed we started, and the food crisis is coming ever closer. The other day I ran into a man who was throwing seed bombs (also known as ‘green grenades’) on patches of dirt. It seems more people are worried about the upcoming plans from our dear friends Monsanto regarding the patenting of seeds. Worrisome about this development is that access to natural seeds (and thus crops) can become very difficult, if not totally illegal (yay, fun stuff!). On a related note, the Peruvian government has shown it has testicles for the first time in ages. Unable to truly enforce foreign mining companies to clean up the water from metals such as mercury they’ve put in it, they did manage to give a big middle finger to genetically modified crops. I wonder if they’ll be able to truly enforce this law. I doubt it…
Back on topic!
What’s happened since last time?
Our crops have been growing, and rather big as well. Sadly enough one of our plants died. When we first picked up our crops we also had a large cucumber plant who was already quite weakened by the trip from the marketplace to our house. That kinda stuff can happen I guess. We hoped the fellow would recover, but it seems to have practically died.
As you can see the lettuce has been growing like crazy, as has the garlic. We also learned that the beer cans aren’t the most effective place to grow lettuce in. The ones in the planter are definitely bigger and brighter. I’ve been pondering about using the beer cans for different types of plants, primarily herbs, but also flowers. Whilst flowers don’t really provide direct food, they do attract bees. As you might know bees are quite crucial in many plants’ reproductive cycles. And with bees potentially going extinct in the coming years, trying to preserve them becomes a major priority if we want to protect food production.
Since last time we’ve added a few more crops outside: sugar peas. Planted them last week and now they start popping out of the ground. It’s a lot of them (two planters full of them) and we’re a bit in doubt whether there’ll be enough space for them. I’m not too worried though, they’ll find a way to coexist with each other I guess.
It’s not like we actually built an incubator or anything, it’s just a fancy name I give to the plants we’ve got growing inside: parsley and zucchini. Whilst the parsley is still very small, the zucchini has grown quite big. One thing I find fascinating about them is that they really seem to be sticking to our window now. I know they do this because they, like most plants, grow towards the light, but I just find it pretty cool looking.
But yeah, they are becoming quite big and I doubt the tiny plastic boxes and pink bucket will hold them any longer. Need to buy some new planters and ship them outside!
Next step is to move the zucchini outside, but also to expand the beer can planters on the balcony’s railing. Luckily enough we don’t have to worry too much about getting enough beer cans…
If you have any tips or experiences about growing food at home, don’t hesitate to comment!
EDIT: here are some more photos by the way!