It doesn’t get more local than my balcony, which I’ve just adorned with a cute little herb box full of mint (as I’m not chewing gum anymore), lemon balm (because I miss not having lemons), basil (risky, I know), swiss chard (even riskier) and an organic cherry tomato plant (totally not going to happen, I don’t know why I even bought it).
I got the wooden box and brackets from Home Depot and some soil from the corner store (I meant to get some Woop! but forgot), then planted away. Unfortunately, I have no idea what I’m doing; my thumbs are the opposite of green — so, basically, red. I have red thumbs. By the time I finally crammed all five plants in, there was dirt all over my arms, pants, my two chairs, the floor and surely on the balcony below me. Even my cat looked unimpressed (then again, cats always look unimpressed).
Anyway, feel free to comment below about how my herbs will never survive. I can handle it. In the mean time, however, when it comes to flavouring my home cooking, I’m officially restricting myself to using only these balcony bits and whatever other spices I still have in my pantry (let me check: dried oregano, cinnamon, celery seed, garam masala, fenugreek, turmeric, cayenne pepper and ground coriander … I like curry, OK?). The logic is that if I can grow it on my balcony, I don’t need to buy entire bushels of it from the grocery store, which have surely been driven there by truck.
But if any of them die, you’re going to have to cut me some slack and let me try again, maybe with something like parsley instead of a friggin’ tomato plant. And I’ll gladly take any suggestions for which herbs and vegetables thrive the best in confined, smoggy and mostly shady places.