It began just the other day, when my husband dared me to grow my own weight in food.
"But we don't have a yard..."
We are newly weds living in an apartment outside Boston, and we may not have a yard, but we DO have a balcony that faces the south, and five windows that get a moderate amount of light. Actually, it really is six windows, if you count the smallish one above the sink. I've done edible container gardening before, and am familiar with the challenges of growing productive plants in small spaces. But still, I weight 134 pounds. That's a lot of food. I could grow close to that number if I specialized in potatoes grown in several bags on the balcony. Maybe. But the second part of the challenge was we had to grow AND eat what we grew for it to count. I think I'd get pretty tired of potatoes.
I began sketching out ideas. Alright, we definitely eat a fair number of salads. So lots of greens. Humph. This wasn't looking good. Lettuce isn't exactly a hefty vegetable. But if we added carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers, snap peas, and radishes... ok, that's better. Home grown sweet strawberries! Just the idea made my mouth water. Small bundle onions, beans, zuchinni, bell peppers. Perhaps even a dwarf fruit tree! You know, perhaps we just ought to grow some potatoes just to be safe.
I don't have much space, so I need to be creative and take advantage of all the light I can. If I start my seeds indoors, I could get a few crops in early. Tiny wires running up to the roof could provide quite a nice trellis for snap peas, beans, edible flowers, and cucumbers. What if I were to use hanging baskets? Stacked planters? Self-watering containers?
Also, I want my garden to not just be edible, but beautiful. There are many types of edible flowers, and many vegetables have beautiful flowers. I just need to find them and arrange them well.
Ah, sounds like an adventure to me.