Throughout this series, I wanted to show you how to set up containers and how much food you can grow in containers with a minimum amount of effort.
There are 24 containers, about 25 gallons each, plus the two white containers with sweet potatoes. There are also six 4 and 5 gallon buckets with tomatoes, and one with a mini watermelon.
We live in the country, so we have our containers spread out in several locations. All of these containers could easily fit in a small to medium backyard though, as long as every area of the yard gets at least 6 hours of sunlight.
At one time or another, we have raised just about every vegetable we eat in containers, except corn. I’ve read that it’s possible, though.
Eggplant and okra have done well in containers, but we don’t eat enough of it to give it the space. I’ve planted carrots, radishes and onions around the perimeter of the large containers with success. We don’t eat radishes often, and don’t have the means to store fresh carrots for long, so we don’t bother planting either of those anymore. I would love to grow lots of onions, but we don’t have any place dry enough to cure them properly.
So we narrowed it down to grow only the vegetables that give us the most produce in the least amount of space with the least amount of effort. Or save us a lot of money. I would guesstimate that we save over $350 a year on tomato-based products alone.
Now for this week’s update….
Sorry for the blurry spots on the pictures. I guess I had a smudge on my camera lens, and didn’t realize it until it was too late to take new pictures.
Squash, Beans and Cantaloupes
Above is two views of the greenhouse area. All of the plants in the blue containers are still going strong. Lost one of the tomato plants in a white bucket inside of the greenhouse frame. That leaves five tomato plants in buckets. I didn’t get around to staking the buckets yet, but they are doing pretty good.
Between the two zucchini containers and one yellow squash here, and one of each by the little shed, I’ll have plenty to put in the freezer!
The lone mini watermelon plant appears to be alright.
Look at those 4 baby mini cantaloupes! I thought there were only two in this area. I spotted the others while taking the picture.
There are a bunch of golf ball size melons throughout both cantaloupe cages. The vines only grow about 3′ and not a lot of side branches, so there’s 8 or 10 plants in each container.
In the white barrels above… I cut back the vine ends a couple of days ago. Hubby suggested hanging a net off the greenhouse frame for the vines to grow up, so they don’t interfere with the electric fence. We’ll get that done shortly.
The Pablano peppers are starting to reach the right size for harvesting. Lots of babies still coming on. I found a tiny one on of the youngest plants, so expect lots more for the freezer!
And lots and lots of jalapenos!
Tomatoes and Cucumbers
The tomatoes look pitiful, but they are still blooming and still have lots of tomatoes. I did a second spraying of a homemade fungicide, but it doesn’t appear to be stopping the spread of the Leaf Spot.
All of those green tomatoes I picked last week are starting to turn red, Should have one ripe enough to eat tomorrow. Yay!
The cucumber on the far left above is getting LOT more direct sun now, since the two big branches fell off the nearby tree with the recent storms. I’ll probably throw some shade on it for a few days, till it gets adjusted to the extra light.
Squash and Cherry Tomatoes
I am so impressed! Seriously, we have never had summer squash last more than three weeks before after the first bloom. I am removing several clusters of eggs each week and killing about one freshly hatched bunch of baby squash bugs each week. And the plants are still strong and healthy!
The cherry tomatoes are also being very impressive! Typically, tomatoes drop their blossoms and don’t set fruit when temperatures are as consistently hot as it’s been, but I saw lots of baby tomatoes while taking pictures today.
Picked a bunch of medium size peppers. There are still lots of blooms and tiny peppers.
After years of trying, I’m finally growing herbs. Now I need to learn how to use them.
From the looks of this picture, I obviously missed a bunch of blackberries while I was picking berries this afternoon.
I filled a two quart bowl, but there was probably that many that fell apart in my fingers from being too ripe, or the Japanese Beetles had destroyed. It’s time to start picking daily!
There were a few additional cucumbers and peppers that I forgot to take a picture of and I ate a handful of berries every time I walked by the blackberries. That was probably another quart-worth. And they were so good!
That’s it for this week’s update. Hope you enjoyed the tour! If you are new here, be sure to check out the other weekly updates.
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