Living in a New York City apartment where the only outdoor space is a fire escape that you’ve told not to use unless actually escaping a fire, you might kill for a garden. Or even one homegrown tomato. But it doesn’t have to come to that.
It turns out that vegetables can thrive in wine boxes—or in other crates, for that matter—if you follow a few simple steps. I’ve been admiring (OK, envying) the simplicity of the portable garden that Houston gardener Linsey Hasenbank planted. After becoming addicted to the ease of picking lettuce, herbs and cupid tomatoes to make salad, this spring she’s planting in wine boxes again. “Same concept,” she says. “Bring it inside and spritz it with olive oil, lemon, and a dash of salt.”
Photography courtesy of LLH Designs, except where noted.
Above: Linsey Hasenbank’s DIY salad garden, ready to harvest. For instructions on how to make your own, visit her website.
Above: If you want to grow salad from seed, consider the Leafy Green Mix. It includes lacinato kale, red Russian kale, Osaka purple, red giant mustard, ruby streaks, tatsoi, and ruby red chard; the mix is $2 from Fire Escape Farms.
Above: Linsey Hasenbank’s sister came up with the idea of a thin layer of sheet metal for waterproofing; see how she did it at LLH Designs.
Above: Almost ready to plant.
Above: Free pot-bound roots with a Buck Revel Folding Knife; it’s $42.02 from Amazon.
Above: Gardening gloves made of washable goatskin; The Pallina Gloves cinch at the wrist to keep dirt out; prices range from $40 to $45, depending on size.
Above: Don’t forget irrigation; visit The Drip Store for configurations and pricing.