Belgian Apple Fence

If you need a “privacy screen” somewhere in your yard you really should consider a Belgian Apple Fence.

About ten years we planted the fence pictured below at my parent’s home. It quite effectively screens the back yard from the lane that travels behind their home.

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The fence is relatively easy to plant and grow although it does take more maintenance than your standard white picket fence.

For the first couple of years it is important to continuously monitor and trim the apple trees in order to keep them growing along the “fence” rather than bushing out and across the walkway or area that it is screening.

The best part of these fences is that not only do they provide a nice privacy screen-fence they can also provide food!

They do take a couple of years to grow in but once they have grown in, they are very beautiful way to add a degree of privacy to your yard.

Harvesting Volunteer Garlic

This morning I took advantage of the few brief minutes of sunshine that we had and dug up some of the volunteer garlic that it been growing in one of my garden pots.

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As I said, these were volunteers. They were pieces of garlic that were left in the pot from a previous year and so when they grew they did not grow the typical large head of garlic that we are used to.

However the small heads that did develop are absolutely packed with flavor and are very useful for cooking.

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Of course before harvesting the garlic bulbs I took scissors and cut off the tops. The tops, called scapes, are also very delicious and useful when cooking.

If you cut the scapes early enough they are tender and make a nice addition to a green salad. However, if you wait, like I did, they are a little bit tougher and not so good in same green salad. Then they’re useful or very add a nice flavor to pasta sauces or stirfried vegetables.

This is just one more example of how easy it is to grow food yourself. In fact I didn’t even intend to grow this garlic. It just volunteered and came up on its own. That’s how easy it is. Take back the power, grow your own food.

Front Yard Blueberries

It is looking like our front yard blueberries will be very productive this year. I love growing blueberries not so much because we can collect them and put them in jars or make jams or pies or anything like that, I like them because we just stand in the front yard talking and eating right there from the blueberry bush.

Of course we do collect up enough to freeze so that we can enjoy them during the winter months.

Blueberries, easy to grow, easy to pick, easy to eat. Blueberries just do it.

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How to Make a Patio Pallet Garden

This is the next step that I want to take in my urban gardening experience – a pallet garden. All you need is a pallet, a couple bags of soil, a roll of landscape cloth and a stapler (with staples).

Pallet Garden
Pallet Garden

This seems so easy to do, and if you have a limited amount of space, it is the most logical thing to do. Fresh herbs or salad greens growing right on the side of your patio or garage? Count me in!

You can read the instructions in their entirety here on Life on the balcony. Awesome.

A Couple of Urban Gardening Ideas

A simple addition to your patio planter can be chives; amazingly beautiful when added yo your urban gardening routine and also very useful in your kitchen.

For example, this beautiful planter has chives growing in it and foodies know that chives are absolutely delicious in many dishes. When homegrown they are even more amazingly flavourful. Along with their wonderful flavour, they add an exquisite beauty to any patio.

Chives
Chives

Another food that is shockingly easy to grow – green onions. All you have to do is stick the onion set (that is a slick little gardener term for the tiny onion that you plant) in the dirt and within a couple of weeks you have fresh green onions growing. And if you have ever tasted a green onion cut fresh from a garden, you will NEVER go back to store bought.

Green Onions
Green Onions

Go ahead, give it a try. Stick an onion set in your patio garden box. Then add some chives, some parsley, basil, whatever you want. You can grow some of the best tasting food. Get growing.