Tag Archives: herbs

2012 Recap…Herbal Issues

7 Mar

I thought herbs would be the least of my problems up on the roof. I was half right. So, earlier this week I wrote about the survivors, the herbs that wintered nicely and seemed to be alive in the spring.

One small snafu…I was away for about a week and the herbs didn’t get much water. I lost my thyme, so I replanted that one. photo 2Also, the rosemary got very dry and looked like it was about to totally kick the bucket. The main branches were nice and thick, so I thought it would come back to life eventually.

Here it is on May 9. —–>

IMG_4022And here it is a few weeks later on May 22. It did, in fact, grow back, and the hard, woody stems had some softer, white additions as well. I was happy with the regenerated rosemary. I knew it would be ok eventually, as the plant my mom has in New York now is probably ten years old, at least. Plus, in many parts of the Mediterranean I’ve seen them planted as shrubs.


Parsley also came back during the second year, however, we had some issues. Instead of lovely, soft parsley leaves, I was getting really thick, straw-like stalks, and it was flowering constantly. My rabbit enjoyed the stalks, but it wasn’t what I was going for. Eventually I got fed up and just pulled it all. They roots went all over the garden box, which I expected. I have since been told that the plant was likely stressed. Why? It didn’t have mortgage payments to keep up with or anything. Argh. Photos from mid May to late September, 2012.

I was given a similar opinion regarding the basil; it was stressed. I started them this season again from seed. The early plants looked lovely, with round, plump leaves. I thinned the plants as I always had as the weeks went on, but looking back on it they were probably too squished in there. Also a chance I didn’t pick enough of it. These photos are from mid May to late July, 2012.

Also, quickly, mint. Mint will never die. Ever.


I got a second mint plant this year, so now I have common mint (kinda fuzzy leaves) and the newer chocolate mint, with more leafy leaves. The plants have both flowered several times and have faked death, too. They keep coming back, leggier and leggier each time. Again, check the earlier post for the first wintering comeback. These photos are mid May to late July, 2012.

2012 Recap…The Survivors

4 Mar

Welcome to 2012! I thought about the garden all through the 2011-2012 winter. We didn’t get much snow, didn’t get TOO many cold days. I considered covering the garden with some hay (that my rabbit decided not to eat) or some of that gardening fabric, but I decided against it.

So, here we are in March, 2012. I was beginning to plan out what I’d grow in the summer, thinking about what worked and what didn’t in 2011. Here are the survivors…the herbs that lasted over the winter. Some were in their own pots, some were in the SFG box. See Winston there watering everything?

These photos are from March 19-25, 2012.

2011 “Harvest” Recap

28 Feb

First, some gratuitous beautiful herb shots. Taken with my micro lens. (Most photos I take with my iPhone, however, so the quality and detail will vary.) Mint, thyme, and rosemary were in terra cotta pots, while chives and both basil varieties were in the box. I totally squished the basil in there. Too much in one square. These photos are from July 1, 2011.


<—– Lovely thyme (common)

            Lovely rosemary —->

Funky purple basil. The flowers are sweet and spicy, so I let it flower just to eat them.DSC_0452

I began to sample the fruits of my labor in the early summer. Herbs, a few spring onions here and there. I was really excited to see what would happen with the tomatoes. I had planted four different kinds in these buckets; grape, cherry, yellow cherry, and a deep purple red that was supposed to yield 2″-3″ fruits. Meh.

These tomato photos are from early July – mid August, 2011.

The following gallery pretty much wraps up the first 2011 experimental season. These photos are from late July – late October, 2011. The grape and cherry tomatoes were the easiest ones to grow, so I decided to stick with the smaller varieties for the future.

Another note about water. Again, it’s really hot and dry up on the roof, and I don’t have a water up there. Tomatoes are thirsty plants, and between light rain and regular watering, I probably added about a gallon to each container every day, and a gallon and a half to the box and herbs. I used these “self-watering” containers (just the container, not the whole kit) with four gallon reservoirs. It really did help, but it was still pretty tough. When I was able to collect enough rain water, I filled the bottom of the tomato buckets all the way. I usually brought water up twice a day, morning and evening, after letting the municipal water additives dissipate or whatever they did, as someone had suggested. The plants did seem to like the water that sat around for a bit more than the water right from the tap. Rain was best, of course.

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