Summer weather has hit New England, which means I can finally transplant my hot weather plants outside. This is good news for my seedlings, which are getting so big the word “seedling” has become generous. It’s even better news for my living room, which has been slowly returning to nature as the eggplants, tomatoes, peppers, and melons get more and more unruly. Here they are back in April, when they were already getting a little big for their britches.
As they grew I gradually moved them to bigger containers, which I precariously stacked and arranged so each one would get its place in the sun (or grow light). When daytime temperatures started getting reasonable, I took to hauling them down to the driveway from our second floor apartment, one armful at a time, to harden them off. Which of course meant schlepping them back up the stairs in the afternoon before big bad night came.
But now summer is here, and I’m tired of schlepping, which means it’s time for all good eggplants to get out and enjoy the weather, even if the nights get a little chilly from time to time. I managed to fit one tomato, one eggplant, and two peppers in my garden plot where the radishes had been, but since I may have gotten a little carried away with my cold season vegetables, that’s all that’s going to fit. Which means container time!
I used some old store-bought containers I had kicking around, but since I’m going for mass production (on a one-person scale, at least) I quickly ran out. I visited the florist department at my local grocery store where they were kind enough to unload a bunch of big used plastic buckets on me for free! After I’d drilled some drainage holes in the bottoms, I had a huge supply of big and sturdy containers for my vegetable plants! As a bonus, they’re black, which means they’ll hold the heat better and hopefully trick my hot weather plants into thinking they live at a lower latitude than they do.
I’ve got a row along the south-facing wall of my driveway, and another row along the south-facing wall of the house, which I’m calling the Secret Garden. Really it’s a three foot wide strip of concrete between the house and the neighbors’ yard, but I’m doing my best to glam it up.