|GROWING IN THE CITY
Even if you live in the heart of the city it’s possible to grow and eat delicious herbs, salads, fruit and vegetables all year round. A few seedlings are all it takes to start growing food in a small pot, balcony or roof terrace. Owning a little bit of outdoor space is the perfect way to unwind after a day living and working in the city, what could be better than to pop onto a balcony or sleek decked roof terrace to pick some wonderful home grown food?
Whether it’s a few herbs that you want to experiment with, a pot of potatoes or a window box of Chives, it’s great fun to grow food in the City, just give it a grow! The team here at ALLOTINABOX® will help you every step of the way, not only do we create and distribute our perfect little Grow Your Own Boxes for Urban Growers and budding balcony gardeners, but we're also on hand whenever you need us via our website and our Facebook and Twitter pages, soon you will be sowing and harvesting deliciously fresh organic food, ready to eat and cook.
Urban Growing is all about making the best use of space, balconies are ideal for growing crops such as our fantastic and tasty No.1 Mange Tout seeds and our herb varieties such as our No.1 Rocket Seeds or our beautiful British Thyme, which goes perfectly with a freshly roasted chicken or stirred into a yummy soup.
In cities like London, budding growers are now seeing the benefits of growing food, not just with what they can harvest, but also the positive benefits that this can have on the wider economy. Capital Growth, which is a partnership initiative between London Food Link, the Mayor of London Boris Johnson and the Big Lottery’s Local Food Fund is already supporting new community food growing spaces across London. There are currently around 100,000 square metres of green roofs in London, and this will double by the end of 2012. With the cost of food set to rise, what better way to save a few pennies and know exactly where your food comes from, even if you only have a little piece of concrete what better way to green up your space and plant out some edible crops.
There are plenty of great ideas for developing a small urban oasis, that tired and bare balcony could spring to life and provide you with salads, tomatoes, courgettes, peppers and herbs throughout the summer months. You could even grow things like potatoes, beans and even chilies, with a little effort you can be self sufficient in months. Urban Growing not only provides many health benefits, but it also great for the enviroment and can even help reduce air pollution and noise pollution also. Built up areas trap heat making growing condition in the City up to 3 degrees warmer than the countryside, we know of some hospitals growing tomatoes, and restaurants using hydroponics to provide foodstuffs for customers.
There really are no rules when it comes to growing and choosing your crops, just be creative with containers. There are simple crops that you can grow such as Tomatoes, Sweet Peppers, Aubergines, Lettuce, Rocket, Basil and Radishes that can all be grown in grow bags or window boxes. When choosing your containers it’s always best to think about the maintenance, generally the bigger the container the lower maintenance it will be, and easier to water. The small pots will need to be watered regularly in the height of the summer, if you get stuck then don’t forget to visit ALLOTINABOX® for helpful tips and ideas.
So If you are starting to think about starting your own little growing oasis, then have a look around your kitchen for containers you can grow in. Jam jars are perfect for starting crops of, or even plastic water bottles can be cut down to size. We love the idea here at ALLOTINABOX® of using things like old wellies, or olive oil tins which also add a continental splash of colour to you mini veg patch. Once you start to get creative with your growing, you won’t look back!
At ALLOTINABOX® our aim is to encourage everyone to get growing and our new City Grow project is all about encouraging you to think about the cityscape in a new way. By combining our growing knowledge and sharing ideas we can all help each other to live more sustainably. So why not join us and become an urban gardener or farmer, however small your space, get growing and help us create an urban buzz around growing!