Container Gardening Journal – Hello Summer!

by Fern on June 12, 2011

in Journal

Post image for Container Gardening Journal – Hello Summer!

Can you see those little, baby figs? Those are in my tree! I’ve been carefully rereading Claire’s guest post about how to grow figs in a container and following all of her advice. So far, so good!

What’s growing in your container garden?

Here are two recent article that I was interviewed for/mentioned in:

  • Container Gardens Can Be Nearly Anything – “Having no yard is no excuse not to grow a few herbs on the patio or flowers on the front porch. To tell you the truth, you don’t need a traditional container either. …”
  • S.F. Abloom with Gardens in Small Spaces – “Planting basil was actually the second-dumbest thing I tried on my Oak Street fire escape in 1999. I also put a barbecue out there once and grilled some sausages. I’m still thankful that I didn’t burn down half of the Upper Haight. …”

Great Container Gardening Articles from Around the Blogosphere:

  • Mossy Terrarium – Steve shares photos and information about his latest project: a terrarium garden.
  • How to Grow Rhubarb – Andrea announces a new monthly feature on her site and kicks things off with rhubarb growing info and a recipe.
  • Chemical Gardening – Mike shares info about the effects of using chemicals in your garden and encourages folks to go organic.
  • Smart Pots Review and Giveaway – You have a few more days to enter Gen’s contest, she’s giving away several Smart Pots
  • Frugal Container Gardening – Kerry shares 13 ways to save money in your container garden.
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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Barbara June 13, 2011 at 6:17 am

Off to read Claire’s guest post! Have a little fig tree on my balcony and need advice! Thanks for the post! :-)


melissa June 13, 2011 at 10:06 am

Tomatoes! One of my tomatoes hasn’t produced yet but the sweet 100′s I have in a large pot is almost as tall as I am and bursting with little green globes. My “citrus babies” are doing well too – the mandarin tree doesn’t have any fruit (it’s the first year I’ve had it) but the branches and leaves are looking really healthy and happy now. The limequat is also looking healthy and actually covered in limequats! Hoping that I get some in the end. :)


Fern June 13, 2011 at 5:47 pm

Oooh. I’ve never tasted limequat before. Where did you find a tree?

LisaK June 13, 2011 at 10:10 am

I have tomatoes, radishes, spinach, lettuce, and herb growing in containers. We have plenty of space, but really horrible soil. DH has been building raised beds. He is an excellent gardener, but I have a brown thumb. The radishes I planted are actually coming up! I’m excited.


Fern June 13, 2011 at 5:46 pm

Raised beds are a smart way to go when you have poor garden soil. Radishes are a great plant to grow, they’re not too picky about their care, and grow quickly. Pretty close to instant gratification!

Bellen June 13, 2011 at 11:08 am

We have the typical lettuces, swiss chard, a hot weather spinach, oregano, green onions and a fig, persian lime, starfruit, and a loquat.

We recently transplanted kiwi, another fig, a 3′ rosemary bush, calamondom, 2 raspberries and some green beans, tomatoes and peppers.

In hydroponics we have lettuces, tomatoes, arugula, and some strawberries.

We are becoming used to very hot (90′s) weather gardening – we see no real reason to stop, just need to adjust and containers and hydroponics fit the bill.


Fern June 13, 2011 at 5:42 pm

Whoa! Your gardening sounds amazing. What region do you live in?

Lisa June 13, 2011 at 11:44 am

I just found your blog on Addicted2Decorating and I love it so far. It’s funny, I have a black thumb, but am considering container gardening on my deck. This deck is Southern facing, but gets no sun (thanks to a ceiling and lots of trees). Did I mention I live in Seattle where it’s wet much of the time? Hopefully I’ll pick up some tips from you so that I can move up to a brown/lt green thumb.


Fern June 13, 2011 at 5:45 pm

There is no such thing as a black thumb! People who think they are black thumbs just haven’t killed enough plants yet. Seriously! Most people learn how to garden by trial and error. Keep with it and soon you’ll be a bonafide green thumb!

Genevieve June 13, 2011 at 1:19 pm

Fern, thanks so much for mentioning my giveaway! We’ve had a number of new entrants this morning, so that’s awesome. Odds are still good to win a set.
I love Steve’s mossy terrarium and Mike’s exhortations to go organic. Great inspiration here this week.


Fern June 13, 2011 at 5:41 pm

Good to hear! Smart Pots are a great product, I was really happy with my harvest growing in them.

JessicaCRB June 13, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Hi Fern!

I have to ask you-can you grow Rhubarb in containers? You called the post a “Container Gardening Journal” and I would be really excited if you could (I’m dying to dig up a start from my Grandmother’s rhubarb) but I really don’t see it working out so well.

Either way Andrea & Jackie’s recipe sounds delicious!


Fern June 13, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Jessica–Andrea (the author of that post) lives in a condo and a Google search shows that tons of people have done it successfully, so I think you should give it a try!

Kate Kurtz June 13, 2011 at 2:18 pm

Beautiful picture of baby figs! You’re making me nostalgic for California.
A mature fig tree is one of the things I miss most about my childhood home in Santa Monica… although I miss lemons more! While we can grow figs here in Seattle, they’re just not the same quality as what you guys can get with that SoCal sunshine and warmth.


Fern June 13, 2011 at 5:40 pm

Well, you guys can grow much better quality apples and cherries than we can grow down here, so it cancels out. ;-)

Claire, Plantpassion June 15, 2011 at 3:39 pm

Just to say that my Figs are doing well this year, – even though we’re almost in drought conditions here in southern uk. I’ve also got peaches in a pot, which i’m hoping will give me proper fruit this year. – Well worth trying


Nell June 16, 2011 at 4:37 pm

Have several things in containers: tomatoes, strawberries, peppers, onions, garlic, leeks, carrots, grapes, a multi-variety apple tree, swiss chard, blueberries as well as parsley, chives , oregano and thyme all growing in containers of different sizes. We’ll have many raised beds eventually, but until then I’m growing what I can in containers (standards, as well as concrete blocks, wine barrels and old drawers!


Fern June 18, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Love how creative you’ve been with those containers Nell!

Orchidea June 17, 2011 at 3:56 am

I love figs and my parents in Italy have 2 plants, one with green figs and one with black figs. I like both of them. I did not think you could cultivate figs on a balcony, they need very warm temperature and a lot of sun. I live in Sweden where the summer is not that hot… but I would like to try next year… this year my balcony is already full with my aromatic herbs, my cherry-tomato plant, the saland ans the alpine strawberries.


Fern June 18, 2011 at 7:46 pm

I’m not very familiar with the climate of Sweeden, but figs are well suited to containers if you have the mild winters they prefer. Though there is a fig that is hardy down to zone 5.

Sherry June 18, 2011 at 10:23 am

Hi Fern, love your blog!!!

I live near Philadelphia in a third (top) floor southwest facing apt. I’ve lived here 6 years and never grew much on my balcony (4 x 12) as it gets so hot out there in the summer you can’t walk on it in without shoes. But last fall I decided I was going to make it a place I loved instead of a place I tolerated (or didn’t look at at all). I stumbled across your blog and have gotten a wealth of info. So, thank you for posting!!
I have a Peaches and Cream Honeysuckle, an Elsa Spath Clematis, a red Gardenia (all mothers day presents), morning glories, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, green peppers, hot peppers, cucumbers, green beans, bibb lettuce and lots of herbs (all grown from seed). It’s doing better than I ever expected (always a good thing!). Thanks again!!


Sherry June 18, 2011 at 11:43 am

Sorry, I meant southeast facing…Must be wishing for the California sunshine!!

Fern June 18, 2011 at 7:45 pm

I bet your plants actually like how warm it is on your balcony. It might allow you to extend your growing season a little bit. Happy gardening!

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