– Hey guys, today we’re
talking container gardening and I wanted to share
with you some really great varieties of food that
you can grow in pots. If you have a balcony or a sunny patio, there’s so many things that you can grow that you will love eating all summer long. So if you are a beginner
gardener and you’re not really sure about this
whole gardening thing, you can keep it really simple
with just a pot of herbs. So right here I have got
some oregano growing, this is Greek oregano, which I love to use in marinades as well as on the grill. It has such an amazing fragrance to it. Anytime you’re cooking
and you use fresh herbs you’re gonna really up your cooking game. Things will taste so
much better, I promise, with just a little fresh
herbs added to a dish. Another great thing about
growing your own herbs is you can always get so many
more interesting varieties than what you can buy in the supermarket. So chances are you go to the market and you’re gonna probably
have one choice of thyme. Here if you grow your own,
you can have some orange thyme or some lemon thyme and
that’s what I’m growing here. So I’ve got some orange
thyme here and you can see it’s starting bloom, which
makes it really pretty as well. And the orange thyme is just
a beautiful fragrance to it. It tastes similar to just regular thyme, but it has little bit
of citrus kick to it. And then I also have some lemon thyme, which you can see here, it’s variegated. So it has a beautiful green
and yellow coloring to it. And I love to use this just
on top of a little lemon pound cake, which is a great recipe too if you haven’t tried that. I’ll put a link in the description. I also like these varieties, which is more the mediterranean varieties of herbs because they don’t take a lot of water. Usually three times a
week will do the trick. And herbs like to be
picked, so don’t worry about coming out and snipping and think you’re not gonna have
anything left for the rest of the summer. It actually stimulates their growth. So go ahead and pick, snip, they love it. Okay, so now let’s get to the veggies. Now if you have a very sunny balcony, I’m going to show you three vegetables that love heat and will very well. First up, an eggplant. Now this might look like
an innocent little eggplant for this big pot, but I tell
you eggplants really need room. You really only wanna
plant one per container because after this thing gets planted, it’s gonna end up being about
this big, so one’ll do ya. And then you’ll probably
get anywhere from like four to 20 fruit depending on how
prolific your eggplant is. And a lot of that has to do
with how you care for it. So, what we’re gonna do is
we’re gonna take this pot. Okay, I’m gonna get my
gloves here out of my handy dandy little gardening stool. Is this not the coolest thing? I just found it online, I love it. It’s a stool and then it
holds all your tricks. Okay, I’m gonna put on my gloves here. So I’m just gonna add a
little bit of this tomato vegetable herb fertilizer. I really like Dr. Earth, I use
mostly all of their products. I think they’re really great. It’s all organic and it’s great. Okay, so and then we’re
just gonna mix it in. Make sure it’s well distributed. And then I do like to
add a little bit of water just to make sure the
soil is nice and moist. And the thing with
eggplants is if they don’t get enough moisture, you can end up with some pretty missshapen fruit. We’ve seen some funny ones in
this garden, let me tell ya. So you do wanna make sure
that you have nice moist soil and that you have soil that drains well. And that’s another reason
why I like to grow eggplants in pots because typically
like look, this soil is gonna drain very well. A lot of my garden, for
years had clay soil, which took me forever to get rid of. And the only way to really
get rid of clay soil is just by mixing a lot
of compost, gardening for a lot of years and putting in cover crops. And over time that soil does improve. It’s definitely a project. But you don’t have that with a pot, so that’s the great thing
about container gardening. You, you know, can put
in that beautiful soil. Okay, so see how happy
it looks right there. And then the final step and
this is really important to do ahead of time because
it gets really hard to do this after this plant starts to grow, is to put in one of these babies. And this, just wanna be
careful, is just a ladder form and what I like about
is as the plant grows, it’s gonna grow up and
hang on these ladders so that as the branches start to grow out it’ll have a place where
it’ll support the plant. So you definitely wanna
do this ahead of time and get all the leaves
sort of out from under it. Make sure you’re not strangling anybody. There, presto. Now if you wanna see what
this is gonna look like in a couple of months, you
can like me on Facebook and I’ll be doing some
live videos over there to show you the progress
of some of the things that we’re planting today. So peppers are another great
thing to grow in containers. So you can see I have two here. This one, has a little bit of a headstart, it’s a little bit bigger and
I’ve put it in a larger pot and that could also be why. Sometimes if you plant things in pots, they will take up the
space that they actually have to grow. Peppers love sun, so they’re
really at home on a balcony. And they need to be watered
probably every other day or so in the summer time. Now if you can’t find the ladder forms to support your pepper plant, you also could just simply use a
steak like I have here. You basically just wanna
find the main branch of the plant, stick it in the soil and then attach it in some way. I actually just discovered
these little Velcro ties, which I think are pretty genius. And you just kinda snip
a little bit of that off and then find the main branch
and you just wanna support it and this is so your plant can grow upright and not get all flopsy mopsy on you. There, see, and you can see a
little pepper is on it’s way. You see that bloom? That’s what the bloom of
a pepper plant looks like and that is going to
turn into fruit, probably in a few weeks or so. And lastly another great vegetable to grow in a container is a cherry tomato. They are fantastic because they will give you little
tomatoes all summer long. And here you can see I have
this beautiful cherry tomato that started out as a little
plant and I planted it in one of these. This is called a Geopot and I
recently just discovered these at this tomato event I went to this year. This what it looks like. Actually it looks like a big bag. It is so light and you
can plant tomatoes in here and what I love about this, for any of you city dwellers. You can just bring this
up to your apartment and put this right on your balcony. No need to have to haul terracotta
pots up to your balcony. It reminds me of my sister and I. Our first apartment we had a little garden on a balcony and we hauled
up all those terracotta pots and the potting soil. Had I had this, I would
have been so much happier. But this is great and so far so good. What’s nice about it
is it allows the roots to grow up this way and apparently it’s gonna give me more tomatoes. So we’ll see, I haven’t tried it before, but so far so good and I
think it’s very promising. It’s already started to bloom those nice little flowers
there and those blooms will eventually set into
fruit and you can see I have some fruit that is already forming. Now you can see I’ve
put a cylindrical form on this cherry tomato. That’s another key tip. You do something to support
and because they do grow a lot I do like to have something that’s gonna kinda keep it in a
little cage as opposed to taking a bunch of stakes and
sticking that in your pot. That could get a bit
unweildy with everything kind of growing in every direction. Now once your cherry tomato
start to either bloom or set fruit, you do wanna give it a little bit of fertilizer. So the thing about tomatoes is you kinda need to keep them fed
throughout the summer if you wanna have a lot of fruit. So typically anytime the
tomato is doing something, whether it be blooming or setting fruit, I do give it a little bit more food. So you use the same stuff
that you used on your eggplant and all you’re gonna do is
just little small amount. Something like maybe
this, maybe a quarter cup. And then you do wanna spread it around. So you can use like a little claw or you can even use your
hands and just give it a good rake. And there you go. So we’ve covered three
veggies, now let me show you three fruits that you could
also grow on a balcony. So first up, the blueberry plant. Blueberries are great
thing to grow in pots. You can see here I have
my little blueberry plant. It’s so happy this year. You can see all this fruit that’s setting. I think the reason why I had
a lot of fruit this season, it’s never looked like
this, is because I added some lavender plants. So I was having some problems
with some of my fruit setting I also have apricot trees and plum trees on the other side of the
garden and I haven’t seen fruit in a very long time. And somebody recommended,
get some lavender plants because it’ll attract the
bees and it definitely has done that. I have many more bees
in this garden this year than I’ve ever had and
I see many of my plants setting more fruit. So I do think there’s something to that. So if you have room on the balcony next to your blueberry
plant, get a little plant of lavender, maybe
that’ll do the same trick. The thing to know about blueberry plants is they do like very acidic soil. So when you get to your
nursery, make sure you tell them that you’re planting a blueberry plant and that you want some soil
that’s gonna be good for that and they’ll give you a very acidic soil. But one of the things
that I have also done that I think has also contributed to the health of this plant is
every so often, I’ll feed it a little coffee because
coffee is so acidic. So I’ll take my morning
coffee, these are my grounds from this morning and I
will leave them as is. And then I’ll just fill this
up with a little bit of water. See, even plants need
their morning coffee. There we go. And that does the trick. It seems to be very happy. And another great fruit
that does really well in a container is a strawberry plant. And here you can see I have them planted in a strawberry pot. And a strawberry pot has
all these different pockets all the way around it
that allows for planting individual plants. And it looks really beautiful
once all the strawberries start appearing. There’s a couple of
different things to know about strawberries and if
you haven’t seen it already, I encourage you to click the
annotation and you can head to my strawberry video and it’ll tell you everything you need to know
about growing strawberries. And lastly, the lovely kumquat tree. This would be another great idea to have a little fruit tree on your balcony. I love a kumquat because I
think they’re really decorative. I’ve cut mine or trimmed it in a way to make it look like a topiary. So in the winter, it
does a little bit better and this is a bit fuller. But I do get kumquats twice a year, once in the winter and once in the spring. So what’s a kumquat you might ask. Well, this is what it looks like. You can kinda see some
fruit is starting here. They’re green now, but
they will turn orange probably in another few weeks. They are the opposite of an orange. So it’s a really interesting fruit. They’re actually sweet on the outside and bitter on the inside. So my girls and I like
to have a little contest where we’ll come out here
and pop them in our mouth, you can eat them just
like that, rind and all, and we see who can eat
and not make a sour face. As far as care, they’re
pretty low maintenance, especially out here in
California ’cause citrus does so well. I water it about three times a week. I do feed it about once a month. So citrus trees in general
are pretty big feeders so they do need to be
fed about once a month with a good citrus fertilizer. And you might also need a little steak just so that they grow upright. It’s good to stake them. And then you can see I’ve
sort of attached it here with some plastic twine. So there you have it, my picks for things that are really simple and
easy to grow on a balcony in containers. Certainly this is not an exhaustive list. If you wanna know some other ideas, I’ll put some links in the descriptions where you can read more about it. Alright you guys, thanks for joining me and I’ll see you next time
here in Beth’s Garden. Until then, bye.