April 2009

Thanks Mimi!

by Fern on April 30, 2009

in General

Mimi, of the great food blog Israeli Kitchen, just left the 1,500th comment at Life on the Balcony! Thank you Mimi, and all of the people who have left comments here. Chit chatting with fellow gardeners in the comment section and via email is by far the best part about blogging.

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I alluded to how much I am in love with lemon zest petunias yesterday, so allow me to show you why I like them so much…


Aren’t these just…tasty?! They spill over the sides of pots very nicely, and man-o-man are their yellow and white flowers show stoppers! I paid $5.98 for a petunia, and I’m not afraid to admit it!


This is a view of the completed pot, although I feel like the shot doesn’t do the pot justice (I really should fire my photographer!). I used a metal bucket from the hardware store and filled it with the lemon zest petunias, molimba helio double pink, and bluebird nemesia.

Here’s how to create something similar:


Gather up everything you’ll need, including a metal bucket, the three plants, potting soil, a hammer, and either an awl or a large nail.


Make several holes (I made five) in the bottom of the bucket, using the hammer and awl (or nail).


Fill the pot with some potting soil and then add in the largest plant (in this case, it’s the petunia). You want the petunia’s soil line to be about an inch below the lip of the bucket.


Add in more potting soil and place the two smaller plants around the petunia. Then fill in with more dirt so that there are no spaces left in between the plants and the soil line in level throughout the pot.

To quote a radio commercial: Easy peasy lemon squeezy. :-)

I made two of these up for clients to give as gifts for Mother’s Day. I have some extra supplies, so if anyone out there in Southern California would like an unique gift, shoot me an email. I deliver!

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Not Really Gardening Related, But…

April 29, 2009

A couple of weeks ago I participated on a panel discussion about writing careers. I was representing new media (blogging and e-publishing). If you’re interested, you can listen here: USC Blogging Panel.

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Self Watering Containers

April 29, 2009

It seems like self-watering containers are all the rage these days. It’s certainly being discussed a lot on the web (for example, Louise @ Buddy Garden just bought an Earth Box). They’re a great option for people who forget to water and fertilize. You just fill up the reservoir with water and some diluted fertilizer, […]

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Gutter Gardens – A Great Way to Grow Lots of Stuff in a Very Small Space

April 28, 2009

Remember Shawn? The guy with the windy, part-sun, zone 5 balcony? Well, he recently emailed me about these gutter gardens he saw on Life Hacker (thanks Shawn!). This strikes me as an awesome way to grow a ton of produce in a really small space. If you can’t drill into your walls, you could try […]

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Attract Butterflies With This Window Box Plan

April 27, 2009

Everyone loves butterflies (although their caterpillars are pretty annoying!). Who doesn’t like seeing a pretty little insect flitting from plant to plant?! Container gardeners actually have an advantage when it comes to planning a butterfly garden because their entire balcony or patio is usually very close to their home. The absolute most important part of […]

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Site Maintenance

April 26, 2009

Hi all! I’m about to upgrade some of the behind the scenes software, so if you never see me again, you’ll know that I lost all my data and am too disgruntled to try and recover it. Wish me luck! UPDATE: It was successful! I hardly broke a thing. We’ll return to our regular container […]

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Great Fruit to Grow in the Shade and Part-Shade

April 26, 2009

Many balcony gardeners are plagued by shady balconies, making it hard for them to grow fruits and vegetables, if that’s what they want to grow. Earlier I posted a list discovered by Adriana, that shows which vegetables will flourish in shady container gardens, but I just came across two fruits that need shade or part […]

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Check Out These Innovative Hanging Pots

April 24, 2009

I saw these at Roger’s Gardens. I love that place! Wouldn’t these be a great way to make a bare wall more interesting? Or, if you spaced the pots more closely together, and used plants that spilled over the side more, you could use this sort of thing as a privacy screen. From what I […]

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Global Warming, Gardening, and Your Civic/Patriotic Duty

April 23, 2009

I hope what I am about to say doesn’t get me kicked out of the gardening blogosphere, but I don’t know whether “Global Warming” or “Climate Change” or whatever it is being called is true. And quite frankly, I don’t care if it is true or not. Before you leave a nasty comment or send […]

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