Far be it from this website's purpose to even lean towards the political - so we'll keep this neutral, but we thought we would share this with you - Sarah Brown demonstrating that she is clearly a lady of taste, using the original Haxnicks Vegetable Patio Planter. Enjoy...
Monthly Archives: April 2010
The City – an impression of endless sprawl,of smog and fog, concrete and tarmac, and nothing green to be seen other than a cycle-lane or two - well things are changing! An ever-growing number of the British public are finding ways to get the countryside into the urban zone - Whether on patios, roof-tops, window-sills or conservatories, it seems everyone can find a space to get growing.
Help has never been so close to hand with break throughs in the development of container gardening. No longer is city gardening the preserve of those lucky enough (and dedicated enough) to run an allotment patch.
Affordable, ready-to-use Patio planters mean that everyone, with a minimum of labour and space, can grow their own produce.
Patio planters are essentially a simple polythene bag, with drainage holes in the bottom and handles on the side – Available in a huge range of colours and sizes, you can now buy a planter to suit pretty much every project and start transforming the roofs and concrete patios of British cities into a colourful and productive garden.
Round and rectangular planters, deep and shallow, planters with pockets for herbs and strawberries and planters with canes for climbing beans and sweet peas – there’s an option for everyone.
The idea is simple. Instead of digging and weeding and all the traditional labour related to growing, you simply add a decent quality multi-purpose compost to your container of choice, plant your seeds, add a little water and food from time to time and Bob’s your uncle! Container gardening really is that simple even for the most un-green-thumbed.
Seriously though - Gardening has always been popular in the UK, and especially so when times are hard – both recently and in the last recession in the early 1990’s, the gardening sector remained strong as people turned to the simple satisfaction of home growing, coupled with the produce of cheap, healthy vegetables.
Hopefully, everyone who has discovered container gardening lately will stick with it. The city feels a better place with green roofs and patios. Healthy, fresh and affordable vegetables are definitely worth it, and lets face it – you just can’t beat that home-grown taste!
Using patio planters makes growing your own tomatoes easier than ever - You can choose between the Climbing Tomato Patio Planter, which has a three sided metal climbing frame, or the Bush and Trailing Tomato Patio Planter, designed for tomatoes that are happy growing without a climbing frame.
Also, you can use one of the three general use Vegetable Patio Planters (we recommend the deepest one for climbers, or the medium one for bush tomatoes.)
If you're using a planter without a frame to grow climbing tomatoes, you'll need to provide some kind of support - 2 or three ordinary garden canes should be adequate, then use some of our Soft-tie to gently tie the plants to the canes as they grow (it's a good idea to leave space for the stems to grow when you tie around them).
If you plan to grow from seed we recommend rootrainers for the best start, or you can buy some small plants from your local garden centre who will be able to help you choose the right sort of tomato.
Two tomato plants should be enough to fill a Tomato Planter. The planters have drainage holes in the bottom, but for tomatoes we recommend adding a thin layer of gravel/stones at the bottom of the planter to assist with drainage. Then fill with a good-quality multi-purpose compost to about 4cm from the top of the planter. Water the plants and allow to drain before planting them - also water after planting, but be careful not to soak the compost.Do not place tomatoes outside until after the last frosts - Keep them in a light sunny position. As the plant grows, side-shoots must be removed (just pinch them off with your fingers) - Otherwise you'll end up with lots of foliage, and not much fruit - side-shoots grow from the joint between the main stem and the leaf branches.Lower leaves should be removed if they start yellowing, to reduce the chance of infection. Frequent watering is vital but we have to add dry periods lead to splitting tomatoes. You can also just rub off Aphids with your fingers, or spray them off with water. Finally you will have a better crop if you feed your planter regularly from mid-summer onwards, with a good liquid feed (many are available in your garden centre).As soon as the fruit is ripe, pick and eat! - This is a) delicious, and b) encourages more fruit to grow. Best of luck with it.