Using recycled bottles as hanging vases for vegetables or herbs production (Google / re-nest)

Read at : Google Alert – Vertical Gardening

A Recycled Plastic Bottle Vertical Garden

Last week we featured a neat DIY for using recycled bottles as hanging vases. Today we feature this idea to the extreme — design studio, Rosenbaum, designed this garden as an inexpensive small space solution for growing herbs and spices.



The garden’s raised design and encircling walkway make it easy to harvest (Seattle Times)

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Circular garden is wheelchair-friendly

Layout’s raised design and encircling walkway make it easy to harvest the herbs.

By Kathy Van Mullekom

Daily Press (Newport News, Va

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Doris Dodd maneuvers her wheelchair from the kitchen, through the garage and into the side yard of her home in Williamsburg, Va.

There, she tends to an herb garden created in a 9-foot circular pattern.

The garden’s raised design and encircling walkway make it easy for her to harvest the herbs that she cooks with and dries for later use. A 40-year-old yellow Peace rose from her father’s garden is planted in the center; rosemary, garlic chives, thyme and basil grow around it. Mint is planted in a pot and sunk in the ground to keep it from invading everything.

“I really enjoy being out there,” says Doris, 70, who was permanently injured in a 1970 auto accident in New Jersey, where they lived at the time.

“The herb garden has done very well in this spot. I have cut so much rosemary that I share it with our neighbors.”

Husband Jim, also 70, is the die-hard gardener in the household, growing vegetables for the dinner table, sowing wildflowers to attract beneficial wildlife, planting junipers to prevent erosion and always working to perfect his bonsai specimens. Doris does her part, watching and admiring his work from a perch built into the deck that overlooks the back yard.

“The herb garden is something mom can really invest herself in,” says their son Doug. “Mom is a two-time cancer survivor battling her third fight now. Maintaining a good quality of life through all of this requires having meaning for your days.”


Growing your own fruits and vegetables in the city (City Farmers News / Udaipur Times)

Read at :

City Farming in Udaipur – City of Lakes, India
Linked by Michael Levenston

Farming In City! Farming Without A Field! Is This possible?

September 8, 2010

This guest article is written by Mr. Manish Jain from Udaipur

It is not only possible, but it is a growing movement in Udaipur.  Shikshantar, a community organization, has been working with interested individuals to produce fruits and vegetables at their homes.  Healthy, holistic living is rare in the city, but now a clean, self-sustaining city is possible and growing our own food is a major step in this direction.

“We have built our homes over soil and greenery, so we should grow greenery on our terraces to replace what we have destroyed,” says Vishal Singh, a zero waste consultant, who has planted many plants on his terrace near Gantaghar.  Terrace space is often unused and gets plenty of sunlight – perfect for a terrace farm.  A terrace garden also keeps the house cool in the summer. The management students of Phoenix Business School have also developed a vegetable garden on their terrace near Suraj Pol.  However, terraces are just the beginning. Continue reading “Growing your own fruits and vegetables in the city (City Farmers News / Udaipur Times)”

Farming or gardening with old tyres instead of containers (Comment Dev Raj Paudel)

A new comment on the post #251 “Great ideas for container gardening” :

Author : Dev Raj Paudel
E-mail : merodev@gmail.comComment:
Has anyone heard about farming on old tyres instead of containers on rooftops? If yes, please kindly send me details at

MY REPLY (Willem)

Farming or gardening with old tyres

I don’t have any information on the use of old tyres instead of containers on rooftops, but it seems to be an excellent idea, taking into account that ways should be developed to canalize the percolating drainage water on the rooftop floor. Maybe some clever “developers” will come up with interesting solutions to recycle the leaching water.

Neighbours of mine use old tyres in their garden to construct “special accents” or “attraction spots” with particular colourful flowering species. They even paint the tyres in corresponding colours.

The tyres are simply laid down on the garden soil and filled with potting soil, which is in direct contact with the local garden soil, offering earthworms a possibility to penetrate inside the “tyre bed“.  The inner side of the tyre (its cavity) is also filled with potting soil. Thereby, a certain part of the irrigation water is also running inside the tyre cavity, where less evaporation occurs. Thus, the overall mass of potting soil retains irrigation water much longer. Its water retention capacity is even higher when mixing a water absorbent soil conditioner with the potting soil. It has thereby been shown that less irrigation water is needed to keep the potting soil inside the tyres moistened over a longer period. This can be an interesting aspect for gardening in the drylands, on rooftops or in containers.

For sure, half tyres or quarter tyres could be used to produce hanging baskets. It suffices to fill the inner side of these parts of tyres with potting soil and to perforate the lower part of the tyre to enable drainage.

Moreover, I strongly believe that old tyres will be very cost-effective materials to create “raised beds” or “small-space gardens“. Instead of using wood for the outer limits of a raised bed, or instead of installing “earthboxes” (see former postings), an old tyre could certainly do the job.

My neighbours use tyres to create circular raised beds or circular “square foot gardens (a meaningful contradictio in terminis !). In fact, why not recycle the old tyres to make our environment greener. The tyres are getting almost invisible when planting pendent (hanging) species at the outer edge. Cutting the tyres diametrically, half tyres can be used as crescents on slopes to limit soil erosion.  They are positioned horizontally at the contour lines of the slope.

Why should people not use an old tyre to construct a small herb garden ?

Supposing that one gets a set of identical tyres (same dimensions), it would even be possible to create a table garden by superposing e.g. 4-5 tyres, of which the outer side can be painted in a green colour. The inside cylinder of the 4-5 towering tyres has to be filled with potting soil, so that the surface to be planted comes at table height. Probably, this “cylinder gardening” will be a nice idea for elderly or handicaped gardeners.

Believing that it could also be a constructive idea for school gardens, I like to recommend teachers setting up trials to show youngsters how to recycle the tyres, taking care of their environment, while growing vegetables, fruit trees and the like in otherwise landscape-polluting tyres. Let me also recommend to offer to every boy or girl working in the school garden one single tyre to cultivate. It would be “their” own little garden for which they are personally kept responsible. School gardens in developing countries could consist of a high number of such circular beds (the tyres), one per pupil, on which vegetables can be produced for the school cantina or for the pupil’s family. Once the pupils are trained at school to “garden with tyres“, they would also have the capacity to transfer these ideas to their own house and invite their family to apply the same method. Knowing that less irrigation water would be needed to produce more food, this “tyre system” could possibly contribute to ensure food security for the rural families in the drylands.

Wherever old tyres are used for farming or gardening, the system seems easier to sustain than practicing it in the field or an open garden space. Tyres seem to be an ideal material for sustainable gardening, in particular for urban gardening. From time to time a small part of the potting soil can be replaced with fresh compost to enhance the organic content of the rooting zone.These are but some simple ideas about possible uses of old tyres. I hope many visitors of my blog will react upon this posting and come up with good examples, preferably with pictures, to show what one can do with those tyres. Looking forward to your contributions.

Tips for Growing an Herb Garden at Home (Google / PRWeb)

Read at : Google Alert – gardening

At Home Rewards Provides Tips for Growing an Herb Garden at Home

AP9*AtHomeRewards Provides Members with Significant Savings on Home Interests, Gardening Needs, and Much More

Norwalk, Conn. (PRWEB) March 10, 2008 — As the organic food trend grows stronger worldwide, more people have decided to grow their own produce at home. Edible flowers, vegetables, fruits and herbs are among the favorites. At Home Rewards (SM), a leading discount membership program offered by Adaptive Marketing LLC, reports that although herb gardening is less complicated than flower or vegetable gardening, there’s still a learning curve.

Herb gardening is a good way for non-experts to start a garden, whether in a yard or in pots placed on a sunny windowsill. Selecting which herbs to grow is the first step, one that should be taken seriously. The garden should be composed by easy-to-grow herbs that can also serve as a complement for the dishes prepared at home. Pizza lovers will pick basil, parsley is a favorite of Italian dishes fans, and those who go for Mexican or Indian cuisine will choose cilantro first and foremost. Once the herb choices are made, what’s next? AtHomeRewards has put together a simple list of tips to have in mind before and during the growing process at home: Continue reading “Tips for Growing an Herb Garden at Home (Google / PRWeb)”

Herbs for indoor gardening (Google / UticaOD)

Read at := Google Alert – gardening

Herbs are good choices for indoor gardening

Feb 08, 2008 @ 07:32 AM


Special to the Observer-Dispatch

You’re longing to have fresh herbs at your fingertips, but the gardening season is still several months away. Consider growing herbs indoors for year-round enjoyment. Imagine livening up a pizza with fresh oregano and having chives to spice up Sunday morning scrambled eggs. This could be a cook’s dream in only 18 inches of shelf space.  A sunny windowsill gives you enough room to grow a collection of cooking herbs, such as parsley, basil, sage, rosemary, thyme and oregano. There is no need to stop with kitchen herbs. Lavender or scented geraniums can be used as a natural air freshener for your living room or in the bath where you can add a few leaves to steaming water for a fragrant, relaxing soak in the tub. Continue reading “Herbs for indoor gardening (Google / UticaOD)”

Do you know the “Herbmaster” ? (ACR)

Read at : ACR International LLC <>


The “HerbMaster” is the most comprehensive library of herbs, minerals, vitamins, and natural healing techniques ever published on CD-ROM. No other CD-ROM compares to the “HerbMaster”. It contains more photos, illustrations, powerful features, and cross-referenced links than any other herbal reference software.

Whenever you are feeling under the weather, or just wanting to cook up something healthy, imagine how convenient it would be to have split-second access to over 2,500 herbs, minerals, and vitamins, and over 3,000 recipes, formulas, and tinctures at your fingertips. It’s like having access to the greatest natural health experts of our time any time you want to explore a library of healthy living. These have all been cross-referenced in a manner that gives you instant access to high-quality information.

This great Herbal Information Software Features:

  • Over 2,500 Recipes, Tinctures, and Formulas
  • More that 40 Expert Commentaries and Works
  • Full-color Illustrations
  • Over 12,000 Cross-Reference Links
  • Powerful Customization Tool
  • 10 Easy Search Methods
  • Export, Save and Print
  • User-Friendly Interface

Important! The herbs, formulas, remedies, and recipes contained within this library are not to be considered as substitutes for proper medical care. If you are sick, you should consult a physician. If you are currently taking medication, you may wish to consult your physician regarding the use of any of these herbs, formulas, remedies, and recipes

Requirements: Windows 98/ME/2000/XP

Gardening Herbs Indoors (Google Alert / Tips for Gardeners)

Read at : Google Alert / gardening

Gardening Herbs Indoors

As winter sets in, you usually start getting worried about the plants that you have in your garden because they might not be able to fight the frost or resist the chilly winds. This holds true especially for herbs because they are delicate. Indoor herb gardening is the answer to all your worries regarding your garden. And you don’t even have to renovate your home to start growing herbs indoors. A window that faces the South or West direction and allows sunlight for 5 hours in a day will suffice your need for indoor herb gardening. If you are staying in a high-rise apartment and the only greenery that you get to see is the distant park, then indoor herb gardening is good for you and your apartment too. Thyme, rosemary and mint are good options as starters for your indoor herb garden. You can grow them from cuttings or buy them from a florist. You can get these plants from a supermarket as well. If you want to start your indoor herb garden this way then you need to initially grow the herbs in a soil-less mix of perlite, peat and vermiculite. You get the directions for use on the package or the greenhouse from where you bought the mix. Continue reading “Gardening Herbs Indoors (Google Alert / Tips for Gardeners)”

Container gardening on a balcony (Google Alert / Chicago Tribune)

Read at : Google Alert / desertification

Adventures of a balcony gardener

Gardening editor and high-rise dweller Marjorie David chimes in today, with a different perspective from Beth’s ground-level view.

Somehow I thought gardening on a balcony would be different than gardening in the soil. You know, easier. No digging, spraying, weeding. But nature happens, even 16 floors up. In early November, I brought two prized containers of herbs indoors for the winter. One pot contained a handsome sage, the other a large thriving rosemary. Everything appeared to be OK for a couple of weeks. Then one day I noticed that my sage plant had gone from beautiful and bushy to furry and stunted. Leaves were drooping and I found a powdery substance on some of them. Powdery mildew had found its way to my balcony garden. I tried washing the leaves. But soon, the mildew was so pervasive that it coated the stems of the plant. I harvested what clean leaves I could find and disposed of the plant. But I wasn’t quick enough. A few days ago I found telltale signs of mildew on the rosemary, a plant I had started from a cutting last year. Now even some of the stems are coated with mildew. Continue reading “Container gardening on a balcony (Google Alert / Chicago Tribune)”

Growing herbs indoors (Dave’s Garden Weekly Newsletter)

Read at : Dave’s Garden Weekly Newsletter for Dec. 10, 2007

Growing Herbs Indoor Keeps the Fragrant Herb at Your Fingertips Year Round

By Karen Jones (karri_sue)

Regardless of the weather outside, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme can bring beauty and fragrance to your home anytime of the year. Fresh herbs liven up your recipes with little effort and oh so much pleasure! Just a few pots, a bright windowsill and a little attention will keep your herbs happy for months to come. The first, and one of the most important things to consider, is drainage.  Be sure that the pot has sufficient drainage holes as most herbs don’t like to have wet feet.  The soil  should be a quality grade potting soil that drains well.  Never use garden soil, it will become too compact for the roots to grow through easily.  An organic potting mix is ideal if you will be using the herbs for cooking.Light is an important factor to consider as well.  A garden window would be ideal, but you can make do with a sunny windowsill, preferably with a south facing exposure.  Most herbs are happy with six or more hours of sunlight a day.  If you cannot provide adequite light, a grow light can be installed for little money.  Most garden centers or hardware stores carry a variety of artificial lighting to suit your needs.

Water your plants when the top of the soil feels dry.  Although herbs don’t require much fertilizer when grown outdoors, they will appreciate an occasional feeding, especially during the growing season.  An organic fertilizer would be preferable.

Herbs should grow well in temperatures that are comfortable for people.  Most herbs are very forgiving and will tolerate differences in light and temperature if they are not extreme.

Some varieties adjust better than others to growing indoors, so it is important before buying plants or seeds, that you read the label to see if that plant will do well indoors.  You may also want to consider the size that the plant will become as you won’t want a large bush taking over your kitchen!  Most herbs don’t mind being a bit crowded in the pot, the size of the pot will curb the growth to an extent.  Mint, chives, thyme, rosemary and oregano are good plants to consider growing indoors.


Growing herbs indoors can be rewarding and enjoyable and anyone can do it, so give it a try!

Edible Landscaping (NGA)

Read at : National Gardening Association (NGA)

Edible Landscaping with Charlie NARDOZZI

Growing Food Indoors

Just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean you have to stop growing food. While it might be cold and blustery outside, there are a number of edible plants you can grow indoors. Some of my favorites are herbs. Growing herbs indoors successfully is all about selecting the right varieties and having the right conditions to grow them. You can go two ways with indoor herbs: (1) start new plants from seed or buy transplants to grow inside, or (2) bring mature annual or perennial herbs into the warmth of your home. I like doing a little of both. Here are some tips for growing herbs inside in winter. I hope it inspires you to give it a try.

Bringing Herbs Indoors

You can grow many herbs in pots outdoors in summer and fall, and bring them indoors before a killing frost. Some of my favorites to grow this way are parsley, rosemary, and chives. There are a few things to keep in mind before you bring these herbs indoors:


  • Check plants carefully for any hitchhiking pests and spray the leaves with horticultural oil or insecticidal soap to kill them.

  • “Harden” plants off before you bring them indoors just like you’d do in the spring when moving plants outside. Each day bring the plants in for a few hours, then move them back outdoors again. Gradually increase the amount of time spent inside. After a few weeks, they can stay inside permanently.

  • Don’t worry about a few dropped leaves. Light levels in a house, even in a sunny window, are much lower than outside. Older, larger leaves will drop off and smaller, low-light-efficient leaves should form in their place. Some perennials, such as chives, like a dormant period in early winter, so leave this pot in a dark, unheated basement or garage for a few weeks before bringing it indoors to resume growing.

  • Cut back on watering and fertilizing mature plants. They don’t need as much moisture or nutrients inside as they do outdoors. Continue reading “Edible Landscaping (NGA)”

Your Own Indoor Herb Garden (Google Alert / Savvy Gardening)

Read at : Google Alert / gardening

Starting Your Own Indoor Herb Garden


Even if you live in an apartment you can start your own indoor herb garden and this is a really great idea because you can use herbs for so many different things. From cooking to medicinal purposes, growing your own herbs is a great, cost effective and handier alternative to buying them at the supermarket. If you are interested in starting your own indoor herb garden then you should know that there are basically three different ways you can start. Continue reading “Your Own Indoor Herb Garden (Google Alert / Savvy Gardening)”

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