I have crammed our balcony to the brim with every food plant I could possibly try to grow in that space, and I have resolved to stop adding, lest the larger plants completely block out the sunlight to the meeker plants. But as the plants continue to grow (wildly, thanks to Dr. Earth organic fertilizer), they will no doubt do plenty of sun-blocking without me adding anything new.
It's too early to tell what, if any, the yield will be. But here is the messy schematic of the space, and a key to all of the plants I've packed in.
The full rundown:
Left (shady) side:
- Bougainvillea, purple calla, schefflera and palm plants (non-food)
- Herb box with peppermint, flat-leaf parsley, and Italian basil
- Rosemary/sage/French thyme combo planter (pre-assembled by nursery)
- Bibb lettuce
- Nevada green leaf lettuce
- Assorted cactus and succulents (not food)
- Italian basil
- Italian oregano
- Sun gold tomatoes (last year's plants)
- Rainbow chard
- Sun gold and sun sweet tomatoes (new plants)
- Roma tomatoes
- Yellow cherry tomatoes
- Red cherry tomatoes
- Jalapeno peppers
- Snow peas and green pole beans (haricots verts)
- Raspberries and strawberries
How many species? Just counting food species, 23. TWENTY-THREE. Totally excessive.
If I don't watch out, it will turn into...
Or, if I stop watering everything, it will be more like...
Having done this a time or two before, I know that all the plants won't succeed -- I've already killed some pea plants because the tomato plants blocked all of their sunlight. But I'm trying, and I'll keep seeing how it goes.
Latest addition, the lettuce baskets (bibb and nevada green)
Five varieties of tomatoes, all of which have more than tripled in size in just three weeks
Broccoli, a recent addition, is already producing
New rainbow chard and watercress
The sad, remaining snow peas (two of the original six pea plants are barely hanging on), the replacement pole beans, and the tomato arrangement I'm using until the beans and peas sprout up higher and can reach the sun on their own
Jalapeno plant which hasn't done much
The strawberries and still-scraggly raspberry plant
Apparently herbs like organic fertilizer, too
The "tranquil" side of the garden, with the resurrected bougainvillea and exploding mint and parsley