Kasey – Week 1

Fresh compost!

I decided to plant a garden in the yard of my small house in Brentwood in Austin, Texas. I wanted to have a relaxing hobby that afforded me time outside with the sweet reward of fresh organic vegetables. Which is great, but I don’t actually own a yard. I rent one, so I can’t dig up a big square foot garden. This is a problem that, while seemingly insurmountable to a novice like me, actually turned out to have little effect of my quest to start an urban crop.

Let me just say, before we start this journey, that I have never in my life kept a flower alive for more than a week, let alone grown anything from a seed. I haveĀ  no expertise, no guidance (at the time of writing), and no common sense. I’ve embarked on this adventure as a learner and will undoubtedly face trial and error.

Not pictured: Floppy hat

That being said, I started researching and found that I could grow a number of things in Austin this time of year in containers and plants that would be relatively low impact on my landlord’s yard. I want to grow some larger vegetable crops, so I started with 3 large plastic containers. I paid special attention to the material to make sure they were safe to grow food in. I also have various pots for my patio for smaller things. In addition to containers, I stocked up on all of the tools of the trade. Sadly, there was no budget for a floppy gardening hat. Maybe next season.

When I got my containers, I had to think about the best placementā€”both for sunlight and avoiding blocking the spaces where my dog likes to chase balls and roll in the grass. I picked a relatively sunny spot on the right side of the house close to the fence. It gets full sun almost all day. From what I could tell, this would be suitable for just about anything I planted.


The next task was to fill everything with compost. I read that there are many options for soil while planting in containers like these, but I took the advice of the staff of my local nursery and chose a nice local, organic compost. Once my containers were prepped, my thoughts turned to food…


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adventures in urban gardening