EarthBox: Growing our Salad

earthbox

Earth Box

Inspired by Pauline at The Contented Crafter, I planted an EarthBox™ this weekend with assorted salad greens.  The heirloom tomatoes self-seeded this year and are well on their way. I’m looking forward to a summer full of fresh garden salads.

The EarthBox™ planting system is a great way to grow vegetables in small spaces.  It’s a fully contained gardening system.  The box comes with

  • an aeration screen
  • fill tube
  •  Dolomite
  • Fertilizer
  •  Mulch cover

You pack the lower corners of the box with potting mix, then add additional mix to the two-inch mark.  On top of the mix you add a layer of Dolomite (premeasured and provided in the kit).  After mixing in the Dolomite, you create a small trench down the center of the box and add the premeasured fertilizer.  Finally, you add the remaining soil, the cover, and you’re ready to plant.

Our backyard garden has very little full sun. This box allows me to extend my growing space by wheeling it to the edge of the patio in the path of the sun. It’s a great system for first time gardeners, since all the guess-work is done for you. It conserves water, another plus since you add water through a fill tube. This encourages the water to flow to the bottom where the roots will follow. No surface drying and no leakage.

I used a similar product called a City Picker for last year’s tomatoes. The plants did well, but it was difficult to stake them in such a shallow pot. They’re growing in the raised beds this summer instead.

I added a band of copper tape barrier to the box and the lower rungs of the trellis. The tape creates a small electrical charge that snails won’t cross. It’s a cruelty-free, organic way to ensure snail-free salad.

DSC_0081

Copper tape discourages snails

copper tape on trellis

Copper tape on trellis

Last, but not least, I planted a handful of sweat peas from seed along the back of the box. (Thank you, Boomdee). If all goes according to plan, I’ll have a box brimming with purple flowers and fresh salad greens for months to come.

EarthBox looking down

EarthBox™ (looking down)

Organic Mixed Lettuce

Organic Mixed Lettuce

Additional Resources: How to plant an EarthBox™.

23 thoughts on “EarthBox: Growing our Salad

  1. While I fail to see how I could possibly inspire YOU in a garden – you’re welcome! 🙂

    I love this ‘earth box’ thingy – I have never heard of this [just another thing I have never heard of – sigh!] and must check it out – I have been looking at some different ideas over he past couple of months at the DIY stores and some are really great, though pricey…… one has to save her pennies instead of going shopping!

    I really really love the idea of lettuces and sweet peas together – all the senses satisfied in one little box! Great thinking!

    Like

    • Thank you so much, Pauline.

      This is really a clever set up. They had a huge selection in the nursery this year, whereas in the past they were harder to find. I think they’ve really caught on.

      I hope the sweat peas do well. This will be my first year growing them. I am full of hope.

      Like

      • I found something similar earlier today – I went looking 🙂 It isn’t your earthbox, but it is a deep rectangular trough with a water reservoir at the bottom and an attachable climbing frame – there were two different kinds, one deeper than the other [for root vegetables and tomato plants and the like] No compost or fertiliser provided, but that is no biggie. I shall save my pennies over winter and get a couple for next spring. I shall therefore be most interested to hear how you progress with your boxes 🙂

        Like

  2. I think I looked for the earth box last summer but didn’t get one. Kept hoping I would find a house. I’ll look again this year, maybe online. If I get very settled in, maybe the magic house will appear. That’s the plan anyway. I won’t have to worry about snails on the second floor but we have other odd bugs. Guess they need to eat too. 🙂

    Like

  3. Look at you grow! I’ve never seen the copper tape trick before. I need to put that in the memory bank….”crrrrreeeaaakk” That’s my cobweb ladened memory bank working, LOL.

    I hope your Sweet Peas grow like mad. Mine use to get 8 feet tall and grow well over the fence. “Take that!” Mr Prickly…hehe Does that guy still live there? My cousin Sherri had a Lettuce Ball Planter posted on her FB page. Have you ever scene them? The look like a giant lettuce ornament. I thought they might not look nice after you harvested them though. Butter lettuce is my favourite. What types do you have going there, they look interesting. Well, we are still not into spring so I’m so glad I can visit your garden…feels warm over here xoxK

    Like

    • My memory banks keep making deposits but, they are quite stingy about withdrawals. 😉

      Wow…8 feet. That must have been something. I’ve kept back some seeds, so if these ones don’t make it (squirrel or bird theft) I’ll plant some more.

      As for the lettuces, they weren’t labeled! I’ll have to see if I can find pictures to identify them.

      Crazy to hear about your snow this morning. You looked so spring like though, in your aqua shirt and pants. Adorable! xox

      Like

      • xo (( you )) Oh dear, did you also see my black high top undies sticking out? (The thong things are too uncomfortable for me). These are just the craziest pants. They stretch after a bit of wear and they fall down. I haven’t lost ANY weight, they’re just weird. I need to buy a belt. It’s suppose to start warming up by the weekend……fingers crossed 😀

        Like

        • Fingers crossed for warm weather, Boomdee! No, I did not see your back high tops. You crack me up. I can’t stand thongs either. Misery as far as I’m concerned.

          As for our pants, I’ve found that if they don’t have a bit of lycra (even 3%) that they don’t hold their shape. I wonder it that might be it?

          Like

          • I don’t know about lycra but they’re clown pants for sure. I feel like one of those crazy rap kids that wear the pants down so low. You have no idea how hard it is to ‘inconspicuously’ pull them up in a grocery store wearing a giant parka. One day, I got caught and had to make a silly grin at this lady buying lettuce. I’m sure she thought I was a weirdo. They are hipsters (or where I think my hips should be, ha) and so any belt I buy will have to be really long……do they even come that long? Gads.

            Like

  4. The copper tape is a great idea and I like the looks of it as well.
    Last year was my second year planting flowers in Earthboxes, which I purchased in Sarasota. I got to visit the original store and meet some of the founders / family members. The overflowing earthboxes, filled with flowers, were a site to see!

    Like

    • Thanks, LB. It looks like a racing stripe, instead of a barrier which is really nice.

      How cool that you got to meet the founder. I saw the older gentleman in a video on their site. What a delightful man. It’s one of those things that is so simple, yet clever, the old ‘why didn’t I think of that.’

      What will you plant this year?

      Like

Please join the conversation by leaving a comment, below.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s