I grow carrots in a pot in my container garden. I threw several packs of multicolored carrots seeds into this pot and called it a day. I thinned out the weird ones and fed them to my worms.
I have decided to become a carrot farmer. Seriously. I have several compelling reasons for my sudden change of career. 1) Carrot foliage is pretty, which I know is a shallow and ridiculous reason, but so what. 2) Carrot foliage is a food source for swallowtail butterfly caterpillars and I like butterflies. 3) I can grow carrots without having to face death or deal with drunk slugs and bean chomping bunnies.
Swallowtail butterfly caterpillars in the carrot foliage
Ok, I can grow tomatoes, too. But not without risking life and limb, which I find highly irritating. Please do not be excited by the Yellow Brandywine tomato below. It's growing in a container, which could be idiotic or it could be brilliant. The verdict is still out.
This tomato was huge!
It was deep yellow inside and very sweet.
Here's the NanoFarm. Try not to get lost. The next tour starts at 12. My storm damaged Rose of Sharon is blooming in the background. 'Yellow Brandywine' is a potato leafed heirloom tomato best grown in the ground because they get huge. The big yellow ball you see is a bird house not a massive tomato. But don't tell my tomatoes that. I'm hoping it will inspire them to greatness.
I hadn't planned on growing giant tomato plants at all. But then I picked up the seeds in a seed swap so I planted them and they grew so then I had over a dozen tomato seedlings so I kind of fell in love with them a bit so then I knew I had to find a spot for them somewhere.....
This is the bottom of one of my tomato plants. To keep disease at bay and help prevent wind from knocking the pots over, I've trimmed away all the bottom leaves. Does it look like the tomatoes are growing at the top of a suburban mountain?
To maximize the amount of space and sunlight in my garden, I decided to create my NanoFarm in the steepest possible spot. If I could hire a mountain goat to check on the tomatoes for me, I would.
There are several more stairs missing from this photo. Repelling gear will be handy if I ever slip and fall. So will a hospital bed. My tomato plants are in the pots at the top of the stairs. Growing tomatoes in a pot helps prevent soil borne disease because I use fresh potting soil every year. But they dry out quickly so I water them every day. I supplement their water with a big splash of liquid kelp and have added dried alfalfa meal and Mater Magic to their soil. Note to self: Stop feeding the tomatoes and give them whiskey instead. They're too big! Must stunt growth....
This would fit nicely on my tombstone.
An unemployed trellis was put to work holding up heavy branches that fell over in
I need a tougher tomato.
Velcro straps from the hardware store are an excellent way to attach the stakes, poles, shepherd's crook, and whatever else I could find to secure the branches to the tomato cage.
I also use them to tie the wayward tomato branches to whatever strong metal object is closest.
Various swirly metal stakes help keep these huge plants upright.
Because I am a genius of unparalleled talent, I forgot to cage my Principe Bourghese tomatoes before my trip to England in June. They fell over in a storm and are currently growing sideways. But that's ok. We're cool like that here. Principe Bourghese tomatoes are grown to be used as sun dried tomatoes. I wintersowed these seeds and the damn things actually grew. I was shocked.
In my tomato frenzy I imagined thousands of tomatoes drying in the sun on the walls of my stone patio in Italy. Then the caffeine wore off and I dug out the dehydrator left over from a rather chewy foray into beef jerky making.
Watch out world! I am now the proud owner of exactly 10 not-sun dried tomatoes!
'Bush Porto Rico' sweet potatoes grow at the base of the tomatoes. These are the easiest vegetables I've ever grown. I just stick the slips into the pots and keep them watered. That's it. With all the rain we've had this summer, they need to be fertilized much more frequently than if I'd grown them in the ground. You can see them turning dark green again in this picture. Harvesting them is my favorite part because it feels like I'm searching for treasure. Much more rewarding than digging for coins in the couch.
I've started giving all my container plants this fertilizer. It was designed for plants grown hydroponically but my plants love it. It's full of bat guano but doesn't stink. I am so thankful for bats with stink-less poo. What nice creatures.
Potato vines growing down the Steps of Death.
Here is the biggest pepper of the year. It's so big, I'll have plenty to share. This is a 'Sweet Chocolate' pepper grown from seed.
How kind of the slugs to chew holes for the salvia to poke through! So thoughtful.
Fortunately, my slugs are cheap drunks and I keep their nightly beer bowl filled. Apparently, they were too full to finish this leaf.
I'm so relived beer cans have become easier to open. I was afraid the slugs would win.
This pot originally held two pepper plants. But one turned dark green and stopped growing, which I thought was quite rude. However, an uncomposted sweet potato from the worm compost decided to grow instead.
Sweet potato surprise
Here is the single bean vine I have left. Some vicious creature has decimated the 7 other vines I've planted. It's quite possible as I write this that these have fallen prey to pure evil, as well. I'm on my second sowing of bean plants and will be shocked if I harvest a single bean.
Stay strong, beans!
Since the bunnies also demolished the Cypress vines I had planted here, I finally just decided to plant the one vine I know bunnies don't like: honeysuckle. While I know some gardeners consider honeysuckle the spawn of Satan, I like it. It will quickly cover my arbor, has pretty white flowers that will compliment whatever colors it's planted near and smells good. This is lonicera 'Mint Crisp'. I created a bunny barricade around the base just in case they changed their minds.