BALCONY VEGETABLES: INTRODUCTION
Terrace and balcony in the summer are transformed: they become garden, living room, study. Why not make them also a vegetable garden? It is a great satisfaction to be able to harvest seasonal vegetables: tomatoes, aubergines, lettuce and aromatic herbs to take directly to the kitchen and eat immediately.
Here we give you some tips on how to build your garden on the balcony in a few simple steps, even organizing small spaces.
HOW TO ORGANIZE THE BALCONY
To have a beautiful lush and productive vegetable garden, make sure your balcony or terrace has a beautiful sunny exposure. Even if not in full sun, make sure that the garden is exposed to sunlight for at least half a day. As for the vases, prefer the plastic ones, because unlike those in ceramic or wood, they retain moisture.
You can then choose whether to start with seeds or buy seedlings for small vegetables. If time is running out and you want to grow vegetables for which you are already late in planting, opt for seedlings. The satisfaction will not diminish and neither will the genuineness of your crop.
If you have little space on the balcony, then you can also organize yourself with a hanging garden. Keep in mind, however, that not all vegetables can be grown this way due to their size. Aromatic plants are perfect for this kind of cultivation.
The right alternative to grow even plants that are not too large in a small space is to have a ladder shelf. If you are good at DIY you can also build it at home. You should anchor it to the wall or railing to prevent some summer storm from overturning your garden.
The tomato is the prince of the summer diet in terms of vegetables. For the sauce, to make a caprese salad or even a sorbet, it is a dream to go out onto the balcony and have the caponata ready in 10 minutes. Its cultivation is not complicated at all. Once sowed in 60 cm boxes, water abundantly and place the pot for a few days in a shady place.
The tomato is one of those vegetables that needs a brace for the growth of abundant water and to be pruned in order to eliminate the branches that do not bear fruit. If you prefer a tomato that is drier when cut and more suitable for some preparations, decrease the amount of water when watering.
The same method of cultivation on the balcony, you can also use it for eggplant. This vegetable also needs a brace as the fruits, once sprouted, tend to weigh down the stem of the plant a lot.
The terrace or balcony can also be perfect for creating a small vegetable garden of legumes. These vegetables are climbers, so place them near a wall with a trellis for support or near a railing. Here they will form a green wall by weaving around the metal, but without damaging it.
Inside your vase, prefer the long and rectangular ones to the round ones, make holes 10 cm deep, 15 cm away from each other and in a zigzag pattern. In each hole insert your legume, and then cover with soil. Water abundantly when the temperature is not too hot. After about 60 days you will be able to harvest your legumes. If you want, after the first harvest you can re-sow and have your legumes until October.
Aromatic plants are the must have of all summer balconies. The beauty of these plants is that they are easy to grow, are resistant to temperatures and water shortages, and many are perennial shrubs. These two shrubs, typical of the Mediterranean scrub, must be grown in dry soil and in pots not too large than the bush.
Oregano and thyme are also vegetables that require moderate watering, but you must leave them in full sun. Mint, on the other hand, needs some extra care and also constant watering, but without exaggerating. You will see it reproduce quickly, because the branches closest to the ground root and give life to new plants.
Among all the herbs, in a garden on the balcony, basil cannot be missing. An essential ingredient on our tables, it is mandatory to grow it on the balcony, also because it is resistant and grows quickly. Taking a pot with a diameter of 30 cm, plant the 3 or 4 plants at the same distance.
In a few weeks you will have a beautiful and very fragrant green bush. With a certain consistency in cutting the flowering and watering, your basil will last healthy and robust until autumn.
The beauty of the garden on the balcony is the harvest and eaten. Since, however, you will probably use the products from your garden immediately, we recommend that you use natural fertilizers.
Just let it macerate in the water with which you water a few fruit or vegetable peels to get a 100% natural fertilizer.
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