Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Food Not Lawns

For the past couple of days I've been immersing myself in H. Flores's great book, Food Not Lawns. It's a great introduction to permaculture/guide to community development with a real focus on practicality and creative use of limited space. A lot of other permaculture books I've read are designed for someone with a lot of space (at least an acre or two) and 10 years on their hands. Food Not Lawns encourages you to start planting and sharing food even if you can only plant in a few containers for now.

Soooo...Tristan and I scrounged up some containers from local dumpsters, and caved in and bought (as opposed to acquired from neighbors) some seeds to get our itching green thumbs started. Tonight we planted a bunch of onions, some romaine lettuce, and some roma tomatoes in empty toilet paper tubes and egg cartons. Tristan whipped up a greenhouse for some of the seedlings, so I'm curious to see how that impacts their growth. In 5-10 days we should start seeing lettuce and tomatoes sprouting, and in 10-15 some onions. I'll be sure to update then.

Once the seedlings are established, we'll plant them in big containers. Unfortunately we have to keep most of our garden portable for the time being, though we might plant some things in the big garden in the front yard as well. We also have plans for a big bin of potatoes. Apparently you can plant potatoes in the bottom of a barrel, and when the shoots are 4" high or so, you cover them up and wait for them to shoot up again, and repeat. This way you get many layers of roots that will develop a whole barrelful of potatoes!!!

UPDATE: I put out a call on freecycle and craigslist asking for seeds, and lo and behold an organic farmer responded!!! I'm set to pick up a surprise assortment of seeds on Monday!!

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