Before a few months, I joined a Facebook group called “Organic Terrace Gardening”. I was inspired by the photos of vegetables/plants grown on terraces/balconies of members. Soon, I decided to start my own little kitchen/terrace garden.
Initially I thought we need to fill up a pot with mud, put some seeds and pour water – the plant will grow. Then I discovered that we need to create something called as “compost”. When I went to this organic shop, I bought a small booklet on how to create compost. I also did some Internet research and came up with the following method –
1. Add greens (left over vegetable/fruit peels, etc.) from the kitchen.
2. Add browns (dried leaves fallen from trees/plants or twigs from around the house).
3. Add garden soil.
I added all the above in 1:1:1 ratio. Guess where – yes, in that plastic fanta bottle you see above. This is my own idea, but I still got compost. I then did the same with multiple fanta bottles –
Soon, I got tired of the little compost I got (that too after 2-3 months). Now I am planning to buy a waste-paper bin or small plastic bucket and prepare compost in that. Anyone knows how to make holes on a plastic surface?
Anyway, I added the little compost I got and planted some methi seeds. I got many short sprouts quickly but none of them grew more than a couple of inches. They all fell down after one or two days. Then, I got one plant which grew to a good size –
Doesn’t it look beautiful? It even had a few violet flowers. I thought this was methi plant and I went and posted this photo in that group and said, “Yaaaaay!! I grew methi in my house”. To which, members promptly replied that this plant was a weed. But, it seems, this weed’s leaves are edible and I could make bajji using it! One BIG Light bulb moment 😛
I still didn’t lose hope. I prepared one more pot using an old aluminum vessel and planted some raw groundnuts. This is what I got –
GRASS!! Thankfully, this time I had enough sense not to claim this as groundnut plant in that group. But I did another blunder – I asked how to grow badam/pista plant inside the house. They “educated” me that these are grown on trees and can’t exactly be grown inside/on top of the house!! But some people liked my way of thinking 😛
I plucked out the grass in frustration. I couldn’t believe what I saw – such a small grass had dense and deep roots! I left the pot alone for a couple of days. Just when I was about to lose all my hope and give up on the concept of kitchen/ terrace gardening, I saw small shoots coming out from the soil. I immediately started watering again.
And at long last, I got (what I think is) a groundnut plant 🙂 –
There are four shoots there, actually. I have no idea if groundnuts will grow under it or when I need to take it out. I have to ask in that group, again. But it’s a very friendly group – they answer any silly question 🙂
Next up is tomato plant adventure. Once I set-up the larger composting bin, I will plant tomato seeds. Whether veggies/plants grow or not, I am getting good exercise in the mornings trying to water, planting, making compost, etc. 😀