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Starting Your Own Box Garden - The Box Vegetable Garden, Vegie Garden

Starting Your Own Box Garden

This is perhaps the easiest way to get started with a vegetable garden. You don't even need to have a garden. All you need is a styrofoam box or other suitable box, some potting mix (or soil), and some seeds. The box garden is described here in an extract from Jackie French's book "Backyard Self-Sufficiency".

The Box Garden - Styrofoam BoxA small styrofoam box. This one has holes in the bottom, which are needed for the water to drain out. The dips in the tops of the sides are annoying since they reduce the usable depth of the box.

The Box Garden - Styrofoam Box with Holes Drilled This is a larger box, which is a better size for a box garden unless you would have trouble with moving it around when full of dirt. This box did not have holes in the bottom, so I drilled some. I used a drill for this, although it would be possible to use other tools if you do not have a drill.

The Box Vegie Garden - Plastic Recycling Box Any box that will not disintegrate when wet (as would an ordinary cardboard box) will do. This plastic recycling box would be excellent if some drainage holes were drilled into the bottom.

The Box Vegie Garden - Potting Mix Some potting mix. The friendly lady at the local nursery said that this was the best kind to use. And that she grew her own vegies in a box like this, even though she has her own house and garden. I used approximately one bag per box. I imagine that almost any ordinary potting mix would also work. Soil from your garden would be good too, if it is fertile, meaning that it has a lot of organic content and nutrients.

The Box Garden - Eden Seeds You also need some seeds. These are from Eden Seeds. They are the old traditional open pollinated varieties and have no chemical treatment, and no genetic engineering.

The Box Vegetable Garden - Old Potplant If you have some old dead potplants, put the soil on the bottom so you can use less potting mix.

I planted the seeds a lot closer to each other than it said to on the pack, thinking that I would thin them out later and plant some in my actual garden. It says on the seed packets how deep to plant them. The box below has been sown with the seeds as illustrated above. Give it a good water once the seeds go in.

The Box Vegie Garden - Planted The box garden just after planting, 30 October 2007.

The Box Vegie Garden - First Sprouts after 5 days The first sprout coming up through the earth, after five days, on 4 November 2007.

The Box Vegetable Garden - Sprouts after 10 days The growing sprouts after 10 days, on 9 November.



The Box Vegie Garden - Sprouts after 10 days The box garden after 10 days, on 9 November.

The Box Vegie Garden - Sprouts after 18 days After 18 days, on 17 November.

The Box Garden - 35 Days After 35 days, on 4 December. The next step is to thin these out by transferring some to the garden or to another box.



Recommended Reading

Organic Gardening, Peter BennettOrganic Gardening, Peter Bennett. I found this book to be truly excellent. It is devoted entirely to organic methods of gardening. Almost all of the book (all of it except for about 5-10 pages) is about food plants rather than flowers or other ornamentals. The back cover states that it is the accepted major work on the subject of growing and cultivating plants in Australia and New Zealand using natural methods.

Click here to purchase from Australia $39.95 AUD

Easy Organic Gardening and Moon Planting, Lyn BagnallEasy Organic Gardening and Moon Planting, Lyn Bagnall. I just love this book. It's not laid out like a glossy magazine-page-style gardening book, just a plain old fashioned book with plain text. There are no pictures and the paper is nice and thick novel-style book paper, which is not glossy and does not smell of toxic chemicals in the way that colour books do. I find this book really easy to read, I love to pick it up and read bits from it and I have been learning heaps from it since I bought it.

It's not the most basic book so I would not recommend it as your first and only vegie gardening book, but if you have either another basic book (with pictures) or a bit of experience, I would absolutely recommend it. It have added it to this page because it includes a good section on container gardening, going into a lot of depth.

Click here to purchase from Australia $44.49 AUD

See Also

Sustainable Organic Farming
Getting Started With Container Gardening
Starting a Vegetable Garden
Vegetable Gardening Books
Permaculture, Self Sufficiency And Sustainable Living Books
Return to Permaculture and Vegetable Gardening
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Perhaps my favourite gardening book, Easy Organic Gardening and Moon Planting is now available as a new 2012 edition that extends the planting calendar.

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