Thursday, June 12, 2014

Smooth Sailing So Far

The plants have really hit their stride and are growing at a fast clip. I think by this weekend I can remove the remaining wind collars and add mulch and cages to the containers that need it..

I'm loving having large water reservoirs for all the crops. I've only had to use the hose once since everything has been planted. Once! Rain has taken care of most of my watering needs.

I'm eager to see how long I can go between waterings during the height of summer. When I first started rooftop gardening I planted too many plants per container so I had to water every single day. Over time I reduced the number of plants per container, or chose varieties with a compact growth habit, so I was able to extend the watering schedule to every other day. Now that I've gotten rid of most of the smaller containers I hope to extend the schedule to every 3rd day. An extra day may not seem like a big deal but that extra day means I no longer feel tethered to the garden and the city in July and August. It means I can leave the city for weekend getaways and not have to worry about coming back to a wilted garden. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Sunsugar F1 cherry tomato. The wind collar has been removed so I've added plastic mulch to help retain moisture. I'll also add a cage soon.

Little Baby Flower F1 watermelons. The vines are long enough to reach the fence now so I've begun training them up.

Lil Keeper F1 melons

Beaverlodge tomato. I wasn't going to add a cage to this plant because it's growth habit is quite compact, but but the main stem is leaning right over the fill tube blocking access so I need a cage to pull it away.

Orient Express F1 eggplant

The Yukon Gold potatoes have flowered. I did a lot of googling to find out when is the best time to harvest and the general consensus seems to be any time after the plants have flowered. The packet said 65-70 days to maturity, these were planted at the beginning of May, so early July should be a good time to do it. Last year I waited too long so this year I'm pushing for an early harvest.

This container is sitting on my new and improved version of the reflective placemats I made last year to block roof heat from cooking the soil. This version uses bubble pack insulation instead of aluminum foil to block heat.

I originally bought the insulation to cover the inside of the roof door and a window in my bedroom. Both the door and window face afternoon sun and in the summer you can really feel the heat coming off both. Once I added the insulation to the inside of the door and the window there was an immediate and noticeable difference in room temperature. I look forward to a lower air-conditioning bill this summer!

Anyway, I took the remaining insulation and cut it into squares, taped the edges off with all weather duct tape and placed them under the planters that were not already raised off the roof.

Sugar Buns F1 corn

Orange Blaze F1 peppers

Bush Goliath F1 tomato

Giant Aconcagua peppers

Pink Berkeley Tie Dye tomato

Large flowers on this plant so I'm looking forward to seeing how big the fruits will be.

Daughter plant on an Ozark Beauty strawberry plant. The daughters will be planted in my 2 empty planters so by the end of the season I'll have 4 planters of strawberries.

June 5-11:

Strawberry (Ozark Beauty): 2.75 ounces

2014 Running Weight Total: 3.375 ounces

Visit to read more about rooftop vegetable gardening.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for sharing your thoughts!